Big wins for Samoa and Black Ferns Development XV at Oceania Women's Championship

There were wins for the New Zealand Blacks Ferns Development XV and Samoa in a truncated opening round of the Oceania Rugby Women's Championship 2019 in Lautoka, Fiji.

Samoa began their bid to qualify for Rugby World Cup 2021 as winners of the Oceania Rugby Women's Championship in style with an emphatic 65-12 win over Papua New Guinea in Lautoka, Fiji, on Monday.

With Tonga's match against Australia A in round one cancelled on health grounds and declared a draw and Fiji losing to the Black Ferns Development XV, Samoa are setting the early pace in the race among the four non-qualified teams for the ticket to New Zealand.

Full-back Saelua Leaula and winger Apaau Mailau both grabbed hat-tricks for Manusina in a solid display that will have pleased head coach Ramsey Tomokino, especially with a crunch match against Fijiana coming up on Friday.

Impressive second-row Maria Jacinta Ausai and Billy-Jean Ale added their names to the scoresheet and the new-look Manusina were also awarded a penalty try.

Papua New Guinea, who were 44-0 down at half-time, never gave up and scored two tries of their own. Full-back Fatima Rama showed every bit of her blistering pace to get the Palais on the board with an 80-metre try on the hour mark, before adding another with five minutes to go.

The highest placed of the non-qualified teams at the end of the 12-day long competition will join the eight teams who have already confirmed their presence at RWC 2021. Samoa are top on five points with Tonga second on two. Fiji and PNG have yet to get off the mark.

Fijiana geared up for Friday

In a contest every bit as one-sided as the first, the Black Ferns Development XV despatched Fijiana 53-0 in the second match of the day. 

Canterbury centre Grace Brooker cemented her reputation as one of New Zealand rugby's hottest prospects with an influential try-scoring display and several other players put their hands up for senior selection in the emphatic win.

A brace of tries were scored by Natahlia Moors and Leilani Perese, with Joanah Ngan-Woo, Lauren Balsillie and Hazel Tubic also adding their names to the list.
 
Fijiana captain Sereima Leweniqila said that the team expected it to be tough with so many new players coming up against class opposition.
 
“We were trying to work on our set pieces and our defensive line. All of this is really a psyching up to the game on Friday, which is the Rugby World Cup qualifying one,” Leweniqila said.
 
“The main focus on Friday is to come away with a win and hopefully we can do that.”

A top-seven finish at the last Rugby World Cup in Ireland two years ago guaranteed New Zealand, England, USA, France, Canada, Australia and Wales their place, while South Africa became the first regional qualifier back in August. 

Girls Rugby TRC Cup
Women's Feature News Women in Rugby
TRC Cup building girls' community in south-east Asia
The third edition of the Singlife Girls Rugby TRC Cup was attended by teams from seven countries and its organisers have bold ambitions for the tournament's future.
Mitre 10 Cup Rd 5 - Hawke's Bay v Southland
Media release Women's News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Match officials appointed for Women’s Six Nations 2020
World Rugby has announced the match official appointments for the Women’s Six Nations 2020 as referees will look to perform at their best with less than two years until Rugby World Cup 2021 kicks off in New Zealand.
The first all-female citing commissioner team at the HSBC France Women's Sevens 2019
Women's News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Zamboulis refuses to revel in lengthening list of firsts
Citing commissioner Danae Zamboulis discusses her career in rugby, from Greece to Dubai via Merseyside, as she prepares for the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens at 7he Sevens Stadium.
Oceania Rugby Women's Championship 2019: Fijiana celebrate
Women's Sevens Feature News Tournament News Women in Rugby
'It is the biggest achievement of our lives'
Sevens stars Rusila Nagasau and Lavenia Tinai reveal what being part of the first Fijiana team to qualify for a Rugby World Cup in 15s means to them and the impact it has already had on women's rugby in the country.
Netherlands and Hong Kong women's 15s
World rankings Women's News Women in Rugby
Historic highs for Hong Kong and Fiji women
Hong Kong and Fiji are up to all-time highs in the World Rugby Women's Rankings, while Samoa drop to their lowest ever rating after losing their Rugby World Cup 2021 qualifier to the Fijians.
A Try for Change
Women's Feature News Women in Rugby
'For us it's about empowering young girls'
Fatma El-kindiy talks to World Rugby about 'A Try for Change', a pilot programme in Botswana designed to encourage young women to pick up a rugby ball.
Fiji qualify for Rugby World Cup 2021
Women's News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Fiji qualify for Rugby World Cup 2021
Fijiana have qualified for their first Rugby World Cup after beating Samoa in the final round of the Oceania Rugby Women's Championship 2019 in Lautoka, Fiji.
Selica Winiata at Black Ferns training session
Women's Feature News Tournament News Women in Rugby
World Series selection quicker than Winiata expected
Rugby World Cup winner Selica Winiata will take another step on her officiating journey when she travels to Dubai and Cape Town in December.
Oceania Rugby Women's Championship 2019: trophy lift
Women's News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Black Ferns Development XV cruise to Oceania title
New Zealand convincingly stamped their mark as champions of the Oceania Rugby Women’s Championship after a comprehensive victory over Papua New Guinea, while Fiji and Samoa will meet again on Saturday to determine the region's Rugby World Cup 2021 qualifier.
Sylke Haverkorn
Women's Feature News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Dutch women rebuilding under former test prop
A Championship winner in both men’s and women’s rugby in the Netherlands and a former test prop, Sylke Haverkorn has now been tasked with rebuilding the country’s women’s 15s team as the newly-appointed head coach.