Manu Samoa 7s leave for last leg

By Shalveen Chand 30 April 2023, 11:00PM

Manu Samoa Sevens left the country this weekend to train in New Zealand before they leave for the European leg of the HSBC World Sevens Series.

The French leg will be played on May 12 to May 14 and Samoa needs a good finish. The following week, this season will have its finale in London.

Winning or even reaching the Cup finals would ensure the boys enough points to be in the top four when the season ends.

The top four teams are guaranteed spots in the Olympic Games in Paris.

Samoa did not make it to the last Olympic Games and coach Muliagatele Brian Lima has made his Olympic aspiration known.

To achieve that dream, he has a core squad which he scouted himself from the local tournaments and the team has proven that they are winners. Samoa won the Cape Town 7s this year.

Samoa still have a chance to qualify for the Olympic Games and finish in the top four of the standings despite finishing in fourth place at the Singapore 7s.

With two more tournaments remaining, Samoa can still make the spot. The team is currently in sixth spot with 111 points, just a point behind Australia, who are in fifth spot.

New Zealand are on top with 164 points, Argentina second with 140, Fiji in third with 130 and France fourth with 122.

France have an automatic spot as hosts which means that even if Samoa finish fifth at the end of the series they still can make to Paris without doing the hard yards in the qualifiers.

Samoa now find themselves in an opportune position to ensure that they can go past Australia as they have been drawn in the same pool for the France leg next month. Samoa leads Pool D with Australia, Japan and Ireland.

Samoa will have to have a strong show in the pool fixtures to ensure that they are able to make their way to the Cup quarterfinal. They also have to ensure that they finish on top of Australia who are just a point behind them and could prove to be the party poopers if the team drops the ball.

Meawhile, South Africa women and Tonga men took one step closer towards promotion by winning the opening tournament of the World Rugby Sevens Challenger Series 2023 on Saturday at Markötter Stadium.

Following three days of energy-sapping action in Stellenbosch, hosts South Africa dug deep to turn in an impressive performance in the women’s final, coming from behind to beat Belgium 17-10 in front of their home supporters.

In the men’s final, Tonga’s offensive firepower proved too strong for Germany as they scored four tries in their 26-14 victory to close out the event.

By Shalveen Chand 30 April 2023, 11:00PM
Samoa Observer

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