Sunday, July 7, 2013


THE first game in the first round of the FORU Oceania Cup was between Tahiti and Cook Islanders.
I was in support of the Tahitians (of course, because they are Francophone, apart from a few other reasons).
The second game was played by PNG Pukpuks and Solomon Island Hunters – which PNG won 29-22 (see last post).

Photo: The referee indicating the feeding of the scrum would be done by Tahiti (left) in their match against Cook Islands. Cooks won 38-5. The hardworking, small Tahiti scrum half is beside the ref. 

The first game started with the Tahitians doing ther “haka” followed by the Cook Islanders who clearly tried to win the battle psychologically with the “haka” before the actual game started.
I was calling “Allez Tahiti” from the side. Soon most of the people from our stand, which was opposite the grandstand, also supported the team from French Polynesia.
However, the Cook Islanders made good use of their big forward pack size and beat “our team” 38-5.   
From my own observation, I think the small-sized Tahitian scrum half (still to find out his name) was a real work horse, tagging his players in the roving forward pack, time and again to change the position of their drive.
Despite being small, he stood out as one who could take on a running bigger forward from the Cooks – one on one. It was amazing, akin to seeing a small David stopping a Goliath.
NOTE: The winner of this Federation of Oceania Rugby Unions (FORU) tournament will play Fiji next year to qualify for a place in the 2015 World Cup.      

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