Saturday, June 26, 2010

TEST RUGBY: Pacific Nations Cup

Fiji v Samoa in Apia

30[1] 15[1]


Fiji only needs to turn up to win the 2010 Pacific Nations Cup. Their nearest rival is Japan. Even with a win and a bonus point Japan cannot overtake Fiji as Fiji defeated Japan in the first game.

Motivation will be Fiji's biggest problem. But this encounter is always one of the highlights of Pacific Island rugby as these two old foes do battle.

Samoa has more to fight for in what has been a disappointing tournament for them. With a huge home crowd behind them this inter island local derby will be a cracker.

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Last Five Encounters
27.06.2009 Fiji 19-14 in Lautoka (Pacific Nations Cup)
07.06.2008 Fiji 34-17 in Lautoka (Pacific Nations Cup)
19.05.2007 Samoa 8-3 in Apia (Pacific Nations Cup)
24.06.2006 Fiji 23-20 in Suva (Pacific Five Nations)
30.07.2005 Fiji 21-15 in Suva (WCQ Oceania R3)

Fiji has a more impressive record against their neighbours of recent. Samoa can boast a last start win in Apia. Fiji has to go back to 2004 for their last wain against Samoa in Apia.

GWC Rugby Rankings
World Table-Fiji 11th, Samoa 13th
IRB Rankings-Fiji 10th (76.25), Samoa 13th (70.89)
Oceania Table-Fiji 3rd, Samoa 4th

Prediction: Fiji by 7 points

Teams not available

Japan v Tonga

10[1] 20[1]


Japan could draw level with Fiji if they defeat Tonga and Samoa upsets Fiji. All three teams could draw level on the table with 9 points a piece.

Tonga will be very physical against Japan. There is the feeling that japan could buckle against the physicality of the Tongans. Japan lasted well against Samoa after their poor performance against Fiji in the first match of the tournament. If Tonga can unsettle the japanese they could be in with a chance.

Tonga certainly played well in the first half against Fiji last week to build what looked like a winning 28-0 lead. The Tongans ran out of steam big time in the second half to let the Fijians back in the game. They will be fitter and wiser, so watch out Japan!

Last Five Encounters
22.06.2009 Japan 21-19 in Lautoka (Pacific Nations Cup)
15.06.2008 Japan 35-13 in Sendai (Pacific Nations Cup)
02.06.2007 Japan 20-17 in Coffs Harbour (Pacific Nations Cup)
04.06.2006 Tonga 57-16 in Fukuoka (Pacific Five Nations)
25.05.2002 Tonga 41-29 in Kumaguya (Friendly)

Japan has an impressive recent record against Tonga.

GWC Rugby Rankings
World Table-Japan 12th, Tonga 14th
IRB Rankings-Japan 12th (71.92), Tonga 16th (67.63)

Prediction: Japan by 9 points

Japan team here at

Tonga team not available

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