Following last week's thriller when Samoa barely edged Fiji, today's high-stakes matchup will produce a champion for the inaugural tournament. (PHOTO: DANILO REYES) 20112071
The winner of Friday's clash between Cook Islands Residents and Samoa Residents will claim the inaugural Tri Nations series title.
National pride will be at stake in the Tri Nations rugby
union series decider this afternoon at Raemaru Park in Arorangi.
Undefeated Cook Islands Residents and Samoa Residents will
battle for the inaugural title as well as the bragging rights in the clash
kicking off at 5pm.
Cook Islands and Samoa defeated Fiji Residents 15-10 and
22-21, respectively, in their opening matches.
Ben Koteka of Cook Islands Rugby Union said: “This will be
the third and final match of the inaugural 2020 Tri Nations 15s series that has
created plenty of excitement over the past two weeks with the closeness of the
matches that were played.”
Samoa will be led by their captain and loose forward Afeleti
Anau, who scored all their points against Fiji last week.
Koteka said: “His full skill set will again be required in
this final match. Also, the crafty first 5/8 Viiga Ruepena is sure to dictate
play for the boys in blue.”
“If the Cook Islands forward pack, led by seniors Thomas Toa
and Rob Heather Jnr, can maintain the intensity for the full 80 minutes then
they will be in for a chance.”
Cook Islands Residents – Toru Katuke, 2. John Vano, 3.
Stanley Tobia, 4. Robert Heather Jnr, 5. Oki Naea, 6. Thomas Toa (Captain), 7.
Ayden Kapi, 8. David Toa, 9. Jason Potoru, 10. Daniel Toa, 11. Arona Ngari Jnr,
12. Jeronia Raea, 13. Tereinga Henry, 14. Leo Roa, 15. Matt Maui, 16. Joshua
Caffery, 17. Paki Mani, 18. James Strickland, 19. Junior Kirikava, 20. Repoama
Ponga, 21. Thomas Daniel, 22. Peter Marsters, 23. Tony Turaki Jnr