Manu Sevens finish 15th at Hamilton Sevens
Samoa have avoided the wooden spoon at the Hamilton Sevens by picking up a 21-7 win over Wales in their final match of the tournament.
The win gives something for the Manu 7s to build on ahead of the Sydney leg of the World Rugby Sevens Series, although their 15th place finish tells the story of how the New Zealand tournament went.
Wales opened the scoring in the second minute through Daffyd Smith, who dummied off the ruck for an easy try.
Samoa were able to reply through David Afamasaga, who broke a tackle after picking the ball up from the base of the ruck to tie the scores in the fourth minute.
The Welsh were attacking nicely before a thumping Losi Filipo tackle allowed captain Tomasi Alosio to get over the ball and force a penalty for holding on.
A schoolboy knock-on from Tofatuimoana Solia gave Wales a terrific opportunity to score, but they spoiled it and the half ended with the score still 7-7.
Elisapeta Alofipo did well to reclaim the kickoff for Samoa, however Wales were able to turn the ball over one phase later.
They advanced the ball through a penalty, and would have been on the attack but for another crunching Filipo tackle which forced a knock-on.
Both teams made plenty of errors over the next couple of minutes, before the tournament ended on a high for the returning Va’a Apelu Maliko.
Joe Perez kicked forward from deep inside Samoa’s 22 metre line, Tomasi Alosio won the race to the ball and found Apelu Maliko in support for a 12th minute try.
The 21-year-old made his second try all by himself, chipping over the line from deep and regathering before speeding home to score with the final play.
The 15th place finish gives Samoa just two overall Series points, meaning they will be in the bottom half of the standings come the end of the Hamilton Sevens.
Samoa 21 (Afamasaga, Apelu Maliko 2 tries; Alosio 3/3 cons)
Wales 7 (Smith try; Thomas 1/1 con)