|Peni Rokodiva on the attack for the Fiji A against Tonga A in a warm-up match at the National Stadium in Suva. Fiji A won 25-10 |
The Fiji A side lifted their game in the second half to down their Tongan counterparts 25-10 in heavy conditions at the National Stadium in Suva on Saturday night.
Locked 10-10 at the breather, Rayne Simpson’s team showed an excellent level of fitness to dominate the latter parts of the game and seal the win four tries to two.
“We’ve been working hard on our set pieces,” Simpson said afterwards, “and I thought we controlled them well today, and that set the platform for the win. The whole pack did a great job.”
“The plan was to keep it tight in these conditions but to go wide if we got the opportunity.”
The Tongans were first off the mark with a try to crafty right wing Sione Sete. Fiji hit back with a penalty goal by fly-half Alex Rokobaro from in front of the sticks, and were awarded a penalty try in the 31st minute to give them a 10-3 lead.
The Tongan backs combined well to conjure up their second try from fullback Mateo Malupo to leave the sides level at half-time.
The second half clearly belonged to Fiji as halfback Vuga Tagicakibau squeezed through to touch down on 51 minutes, then inside centre John Stewart finished off a smart move through the middle to take the score to 20-10.
Fiji No.8 Samu Vunisa ran well off the back of the scrum and made plenty of ground, and wing William Umu also produced some impressive skills in the wet.
Having been held up twice in the in-goal area, the Fijians threw one last move together but the Tongans ripped away possession and kicked ahead. Fiji centre Isikeli Vuruna scooped up the ball 35 metres out and forced his way past three tackles attempts before touching down in the corner for a quite brilliant try to complete the scoring. Saturday 17 May 2008 Fiji A 25 Tonga A 10 National Stadium, Suva Half-time:
: James Bolabiu (Fiji) Crowd:
500 FIJI A:
15 Kini Murimurivalu, 14 Alipate Buto (William Saukuru 69), 13 Isikeli Vuruna, 12 John Stewart, 11 William Umu, 10 Alexander Rokobaro (Anare Vakawaletabua 56), 9 Vuga Tagicakibau (Peni Rokodiva 56), 8 Samu Vunisa (Waqabaca Kotobalavu 56), 7 Jese Cirikisuva, 6 Joseva Levula, 5 Tevita Tuiloa (Ofa Unaloto 77), 4 Temo Vakaloloma, 3 Jeke Lalai (Manasa Saulo 77), 2 Saula Qalomai (Seru Cakobau 77), 1 Serupepeli Qaranivalu. Coach
: Rayne Simpson Tries:
Penalty try, Tagicakibau, Stewart, Vuruna; Conversion
: Rokobaro; Penalty goal:
Rokobaro. TONGA A:
15 Mateo Malupo, 14 Sione Sete (Feleti Hausa 65), 13 Viliami Takai, 12 Patrick Maka, 11 Pauni Atiola (yellow card 63-72, Sione Hausia 74), 10 Mahe Fangupo, 9 Sekope Maea, 8 Casanova Kauvaka, 7 Inoke Taufa (Tevita Molliteka 60), 6 Finau Tupa, 5 Tevita Taugi (Paula Kata 53), 4 Sapu Hehea, 3 Mosa Afu (Samiu Vea 72), 2 Tone Tuleufuka (Lepaola Tauveli 70), 1 Lonely Kengike (Ikuna Manuofetou 41). Coach:
Fe’ao Vakata Tries:
Sete, Malupo. Scoring sequence
(Fiji’s scores shown first)
12min – TRY TONGA, Sete; conversion Malupo (missed) – 0-5
17min – PEN GOAL FIJI, Rokobaro (missed) – 0-5
20min – PEN GOAL FIJI, Rokobaro – 3-5
31min – PEN TRY FIJI; conversion Rokobaro – 10-5
35min – TRY TONGA, Malupo; conversion Malupo (missed) – 10-10
52min – TRY FIJI, Tagicakibau; conversion Rokobaro (missed) – 15-10
59min – TRY FIJI, Stewart; conversion Murimurivalu (missed) – 20-10
63min – Yellow card Tonga, Atiola
87min – TRY FIJI, Vuruna; conversion Murimurivalu (missed) – 25-10