Manu Samoa 7’s have fallen out of the cup contentions at the Dubai 7’s after going down to South Africa 24-19.
The men in blue got off to a hot start taking an early 12-0 lead
Va’afauese Maliko hit the Springboks defence with two left foot steps before hitting the gas to run away with Samoa’s first try.
Uaina Sione followed up Maliko’s efforts with a try of his own after he fooled South Africa with a shifty right foot step. Sione showed off his own speed to make it a Samoan 12-0 lead.
This lead didn’t last long as the South Africans hit back with two quick tries of their own before halftime that tied the match at 12 all.
Brian Lima’s men entered the second half just as they did the first, in red hot form.
Paul Scanlan’s pin point kickoff earned them the ball. Samoa spread the ball wide until Scanlan decided it was his turn to show off his fancy footwork to split the Springboks defence and give Samoa a 7 point lead.
From here on out Samoa had lost all control of the match. An error at scrum time gifted South Africa a penalty. A simple tap by South Africa saw them dive into the corner to score.
Samoa still led 19-17 with 90 seconds to go. South Africa attacked hard on the Samoan try line but Samoa’s defence gave them a penalty deep into their own half.
A questionable call by Samoa to tap the ball in that area of the field put them in a position of pressure, a position that South Africa took full advantage of.
Samoa tap and turn the ball over on the very next ruck. As easy as you like the Springboks spread the ball wide in 3 passes to score in the corner and to defeat Samoa 24-19.
Samoa still have a crucial 5th place Semi-final against France later tonight. Samoa must defeat France to stay in the top 4 overall standings of the World Series.
The top 4 Nations at the end of the season automatically qualify for the 2024 Olympic Games, so there’s still so much to play for.
5th Place Semi-final
Samoa vs France
Saturday 3rd December, 10:52pm