Nelsptuit - Samoa survived early pressure to triumph 39-10 against Italy on
Saturday in Nelspruit and reach the final of a South African four-nation
Italy had nothing to show for early dominance and
after trailing 10-3 at half-time, conceded two early second-half tries
in the first Test hosted by this north-eastern city.
was that none of the five Samoan tries came from 117-kilogram left-wing
Alesana Tuilagi, who wreaked havoc in a 10-point win over Scotland last
South Africa, who play Scotland at the same venue in the
second part of a double-header, are the likely final opponents on June
22 at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria.
Italy were up against it even
before the kick-off, needing to win by 23 points and prevent Samoa
claiming a four-try bonus point if they were to go second on the table.
a 10-kilogram-per-forward weight advantage, the Pacific islanders were
penalised at the first two scrums and conceded early territorial and
But recalled fly-half Luciano Orquera
fluffed his first penalty chance midway through the half and it was
Samoa who broke out to open the scoring through centre and skipper Paul
Fly-half Tusi Pisi burst forward after the islanders won
a midfield collision and a couple of passes later Williams was over
under the crossbar for a try he converted.
had better luck with his second penalty attempt, a closer and less
angled kick that he planted beween the posts for three points the
Azzurri (Blues) thoroughly deserved.
A Williams penalty restored
the seven-point Samoan advantage and an unlucky bounce close to the
try-line robbed Gonzala Canale of a scoring chance after fellow centre
Gonzalo Garcia just failed to land a long-range penalty kick.
needed early second-half points to get back into contention, but it was
the Samoans who crossed the line twice within 13 minutes and sealed a
fourth win in five Tests against Italy.
A cross-field Pisi kick
set up Alapati Leiua to evade two tackles and score a try and the Samoa
pivot was also the creator of the next one with Johnny Leota racing in
unopposed and Williams converted.
The match was more evenly
contested than the 25-3 scoreline suggested, but it got worse for the
Six Nations cinderella side when No. 8 Taiasina Tuifu'a dotted down and
Williams converted from near the touchline.
Leiua was sin binned
10 minutes from time, Italy were awarded a penalty try converted by
replacement fly-half Alberto Di Bernardo, and full-back Brando Va'aulu
crossed after a break by substitute Ki Anufe, who converted.Teams:
15 Andrea Masi, 14
Giovanbattista Venditti, 13 Gonzalo Canale, 12 Gonzalo Garcia, 11
Tommaso Iannone, 10 Luciano Orquera, 9 Edoardo Gori, 8 Sergio Parisse, 7
Marco Bergamasco, 6 Alessandro Zanni, 5 Marco Bortolami, 4 Valerie
Bernabo, 3 Martin Castrogiovanni, 2 Leonardo Ghiraldini, 1 Alberto De
Substitutes: 16 Andrea Manici, 17 Michele Rizzo, 18 Lorenzo
Cittadini, 19 Antonio Pavanello, 20 Manoa Vosawai, 21 Tobias Botes, 22
Alberto di Bernardo, 23 Luke McLeanSamoa:
Sooialo, 14 Alapati Leiua, 13 Paul Williams (captain), 12 John Leota, 11
Alesana Tuilagi, 10 Tusiata Pisi, 9 Jeremy Sua, 8 Taiasina Tuifua, 7
Jack Lam, 6 Ofisa Treviranus, 5 Daniel Leo, 4 Teofilo Paulo, 3 Census
Johnston, 2 Wayne Ole Avei, 1 Sakaria Taulafo
Ti'i Paulo, 17 Logovii Mulipola, 18 James Johnston, 19 Kane Thompson, 20
Junior Poluleuligaga, 21 Brando Vaaulu, 22 Seilala Mapusua, 23 Piula
Samoa - 39: Tries: Paul Williams, Alapati Leiua, Johnny Leota, Taiasina Tuifu'a, Brando Va'aulu; Conversions: Williams (3), Ki Anufe; Penalties: Williams (2)
Italy - 10: Try: penalty try; Conversion: Alberto Di Bernardo; Penalty: Luciano Orquera
Samoa: Leiua (70 mins)
Referee: Craig Joubert (RSA)