Manu Samoa 7s Must Reach the Semifinal Stage in Madrid

0
905
Steve Rimoni Onosai and Vaafauese Apelu Maliko. Images: HSBC 7s

28 May 2024; Tuanaimato, Samoa. The Manu Samoa 7s are in Madrid Spain for the final round of this season’s World series, playing in the Qualifier round where they must reach the semifinals to remain in the Top 12 Competition for next season.

Manu Samoa 7s Head Coach, Muliagatele Fata Brian Lima, has announced his squad for the Madrid Leg to be played at Civitas Metropolitano Stadium this weekend while Samoa celebrates Independence.

The line-up sees the return of last season’s top try scorer Vaafauese Apelu-Maliko looking to bolster the side which has been struck with injuries throughout the season.

Apelu Maliko has spent the season playing 15s and will be looking to bring an x-factor component to the team this weekend.

Vaafauese Apelu Maliko securing kickoff balls for Samoa, vs England, Birmingham 2022

In the forwards, the team also welcomes back Motu Opetai and power forward Taunuu Niulevaea. Both players have recovered from injuries sustained in Hong Kong.

Dan Patelesio, Paul Eti Alesana-Slater and Enosa Afemai make up a strong set of forwards for this weekend.

For the backs, Neueli Leitufia returns from injury and Elisapeta Alofipo makes his return to the squad after injury and commitments to his wedding.

Samoa is the Home of Taula. Enjoy responsibly.

Des Sepulona covers Neueli in the halfback position while Faafoi Falaniko will share inside back duties with Elisapeta Alofipo and Steve Rimoni Onosai.

Speedsters Malakesi Masefau and Tuna Tuitama make up a strong backs line-up for the weekend.

Vaovasa Afa Su’a, Paul Scanlan and BJ Telefoni Lima, Uaina Tui Sione, Jeff Levy, Tom Maiava, Pisi Leilua and Levi Milford are all ruled out due to injuries.

Samoa is in Qualifier Pool B, alongside Kenya, Spain and Chile.

Manu Samoa 7s will kick off their campaign on Saturday 1st June at 4:25am against Kenya (Samoan local time).

The Top 4 of the Qualifier will join the 12-team HSBC 7s world series while the bottom 4 will relegate to the lower level comp, meaning MS7s must reach the semifinal stage of this weekend’s tournament.

 


Brisin Manu Retzlaff-Lima