Mapusua makes 9 changes to starting 15 for last match of Rugby World Cup


The Manu Samoa Head Coach Vaovasamanaia Seilala Mapusua has made 9 hanges to the starting XV from the team that lost against Japan, with only Theo McFarland, Fritz Lee, Steven Luatua, Jonathan Taumateine, Tumua Manu and Duncan Paia’aua retaining their places.

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After a close 19-10 loss to Argentina and a heartbreaking 28-22 defeat by Japan, the Manu will take on England on Sunday morning (Samoa Time) in their fourth and final pool match.

An entirely new front row has been named to start. Jordan Lay and captain Michael Alaalatoa are set to start in the front row with Sam Malolo starting at hooker.

Two new locks come into the starting XV with Sam Slade and Brian Alainu’u’ese named in the 23 for the first time in the campaign.

Theodore McFarland moves back to No 6 while Fritz Lee keeps his role at the open side.

Steven Luatua who played lock last week is moved to the Number 8 position, where he has started for earlier matches.

Halfback Jonathan Taumateine keeps his starting spot at 9 with Lima Sopoaga coming back to start at 10.

Danny Toala has been named at inside centre to partner with Tumua Manu. The centre from Afega has started in every match of the Rugby World Cup.

The new look backline includes Neria Fomai and Nigel Ah Wong who come into the starting side as wings for this weekend.

Duncan Paia’aua retains his fullback position and has also started every match of the RWC.

Samoa is the Home of Taula.

Seilala Lam, Paul Alo-Emile and James Lay set to bring impact off the bench in the front rows.

Sootala Fa’aso’o, Alamanda Motuga and Miracle Failagi will also look to come off the bench for the second row.

Melani Matavao and Christian Lealiifano have been named  as covers to Sopoaga Taumateine in the steering positions.

As Samoa look to finish strong fiinish, England would be fighting to top Pool D.

Manu Samoa v England will kick off at 4.45am Samoa Time. You can watch it Live on TV1 Samoa.

Daniel M Limā