Samoa Return to Top 10 of World Rugby Rankings for First Time in 8 Years

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Captain Michael Alaalatoa leads Manu Samoa off the field after their warmup just before the Rugby World Cup qualifier against Tonga at the Mt Smart Stadium, 10 July, 2021, Auckland, NZ. (Photo by Dave Rowland/Getty Images).

Source: World Rugby News. Manu Samoa have returned to the Top 10 of the World Rugby Men’s Rankings for the first time in nearly eight years after the win over Japan in the weekend.

Samoa was last in the Top 10 before the  2015 Rugby World Cup, and have been down as low as 17th in the intervening years.

Saturday’s 24-22 win over Rugby World Cup 2023 Pool D opponents Japan continued Vaovasamanaia Seilala Mapusua’s honeymoon period as Head Coach which has produced seven wins and only one defeat.

Japan lost former captain and number eight Michael Leitch to a red card for a high tackle on So’otala Fa’aso’o with 10 minutes to go in the first half in the weekend.

Samoa struggled to capitalise and the scores were tied at 10-10 at half-time. Four second-half penalties from Seungshin Lee kept the Brave Blossoms in the game throughout. Samoa playing its first game of the year with players from across the globe managed to snip the win by outscoring Japan three tries to one.

Jonathan Taumateine and Tumua Manu crossed in the second half after Alamanda Motuga had struck just before half-time, while Christian Lealiifano’s three conversions and penalty on debut proved crucial to the final outcome.

With 1.43 points awarded to them for the narrow victory, Samoa will climb over Georgia and also claim 10th place off Japan who will fall to 12th, their lowest position since November 2016.

Manu Samoa will face Fiji this weekend at Apia Park with a 3pm kick off. Tickets range from $10 tala general admission to side stands of $50 tala and $75 for the centre stand.

Tickets are available from Vodafone, SCB and the Lakapi Samoa Head Office at Tuanaimato.

Current Standings Men’s 15s

 

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