Tokyo - Faatiga Lemalu scored two tries on Sunday as Samoa defeated defending champions Japan 27-26 to win the Pacific Nations Cup.
Hendrik Tui and Ayumi Goromaru ran in tries to help Japan take a 16-0 after 27 minutes. But Samoa came back late in the first half and cut the lead to 16-14 on tries by Kahn Fotuali'i and Lemalu.
Samoa took a 17-16 lead on a Ki Anufe penalty three minutes after the break and the visitors widened the lead to 24-16 when Lemalu ran in his second try and Lolo Lui added the conversion.
Anufe's second penalty three minutes later gave Samoa a 27-16 lead. Japan got two tries from Takashi Kikutani and Toshiaki Hirose but Nicholas Ryan missed a late penalty which left the hosts a point short.