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Big weekend for rugby in American Samoa

Tama Uli rugby team from Salelologa
16 rugby teams are poised to compete over 2-day tournament

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Friday and Saturday sixteen rugby teams from Samoa, American Samoa and New Zealand will be competing at the Veterans Memorial Stadium for the Governor Lemanu Cup, first prize and for $12,000, hosted by the Marist St. Josephs Sports Club American Samoa.

The event will display a high standard of Samoa Sevens, and the many Samoa players that will be taking the field includes Paul Scanlan, Tila Mealoi, Neueli Leutufia, Tuna Tiitama and Faafoi FAlaniko. Another famous player included in this lineup is BJ Lima, the son of the legendary and Manu Samoa Sevens coach Brian Lima.

Bula Fiji, Avele Club, Moli ole Ava and Nu’uuli are the top 4 contenders in the American Samoa Rugby Union Tournament and will be representing American Samoa in all its glory. Vaiala, Tepatasi, Tama Uli, Malie Sharks, Apia Maroons, Vaimoso, Alalagafa and Satalo from Falealili, Safotu and Lauli’i Lions will be representing the Independent state of Samoa, and the Marist St. Joseph’s rugby team will be representing New Zealand for the men’s division.

Organizers of the rugby match, Marist St. Josephs Sports Club American Samoa has tirelessly worked to secure sponsorships for the tournament and the total cash pool to be awarded to the winners is $30,000.

Vailima is the Naming Right Sponsor with Pentagon Samoa and ASTCA as Diamond sponsors.

World rugby certified referees are being flown in for the games and they will be residing at local hotels and B&B’s along with some of the off-island teams.

The tournament has been sanctioned by the American Samoa Rugby Union.

Games commence on Friday at 10a.m. and 9a.m for Saturday.

Tickets for adults are $5 and $3 for children under 12 for Friday; and on Saturday adult tickets will increase to $10.