World Cup - Dangerous Samoa smash Namibia

Wed, 14 Sep 05:30:00 2011

Hulking winger Alesana Tuilagi scored three tries as Samoa kicked off their World Cup campaign with a 49-12 bonus point win over Namibia in a Pool D encounter at Rotorua International Stadium.

Namibia's Theuns Kotze (L) fails to prevent Samoa's Alesana Tuilagi from scoring a try during their Rugby World Cup Pool D match at Rotorua international Stadium in Rotorua - 0

The man affectionately known by his team mates as "The Bulldozer" was in unstoppable form close to the line, crossing twice in the first half before topping off an impressive performance with a third try in the 53rd minute.

Scrum-half Kahn Fotuali'i and full-back Paul Williams also scored a try apiece, while referee Romain Poite awarded the Pacific islanders a penalty try late in the game for repeated scrum infringements by the Namibians close to their line.

Samoa signalled their intentions right from the whistle as they attempted to run the ball out of the own 22 in the first minute, and just 60 seconds later, the Ospreys-bound Fotuali'I touched down for the first of his side's six tries.

"We have been waiting the whole week and been watching a lot of rugby. The boys were itching to get out there and I'm pretty happy with the way they played," said Samoa skipper Mahonri Schwalger.

It was thrilling, point-a-minute stuff from the Samoans in the opening quarter and the almost 13,000-strong crowd, many waving Samoan flags, were clearly enjoying the Pacific islanders' expansive playing style.

Namibia tried hard to contribute to the occasion with some bustling forward work but were too often guilty of making mistakes that cost them possession.

Samoa fly-half Tusi Pisi slotted two conversions and a penalty before he went off in the 28th minute with a hamstring injury while Williams, sin-binned in the first half for a shoulder charge on Namibia number 10 Theuns Kotze, kicked a penalty and added three conversions.

Centre Danie van Wyk and Kotze scored consolation tries for the African side, while the fly-half converted his effort under the posts.

Samoa will now turn their attention to a highly anticipated showdown with Wales in Hamilton on Sunday that could well decide which team will emerge from the tournament's toughest group with Pool D favourites South Africa.

"We've got room to improve, so we're looking forward to Wales," Schwalger added.

Namibia captain Jacques Burger accepted his side were always likely to come off second best to a dangerous-looking Samoa team as they followed up Saturday's 49-25 loss to Fiji with another bruising defeat.

"They're a class team and if you make mistakes they will punish you... and they did," Burger said.

"Our first phase was shocking. They really sucked all the life out of our first phase.

"We looked all right when we got the ball but we didn't get it much, and we made a lot of defensive errors and they punished us."

SCORING TIMELINE:

1’Fotuali’i try: Samoa 5-0

2’Pisi conversion: Samoa 7-0

9’Pisi penalty: Samoa 10-0

16’ Tuilagi try: Samoa 15-0

17’ Pisi conversion: Samoa 17-0

23’ Pisi penalty: Samoa 20-0

34’ Tuilagi try: Samoa 25-0

52’ Williams penalty: Samoa 28-0

54’ Tuilagi try: Samoa 33-0

55’ Williams conversion: Samoa 35-0

58’ Williams try: Samoa 40-0

60’ Williams conversion: Samoa 42-0

62’ Van Wyk try: 42-5 Namibia

70’ Penalty try: Samoa 47-5

71’ Williams conversion: Samoa 49-5

78’ Kotze try: 49-10 Namibia

79’ Kotze try: 49-12 Namibia

Reuters

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