Fiji move a step closer to Rugby World Cup qualification

Fiji power past Samoa in the second round of the Oceania Rugby Women's Championship to boost their chances of Rugby World Cup 2021 qualification, while the Black Ferns Development XV rack up another half-century.

Fiji's quest to qualify for a first Rugby World Cup moved a step closer after they beat Samoa 26-7 on day two of the Oceania Rugby Women's Championship 2019 in Lautoka on Friday.

Samoa have graced the showpiece event of the women's game on three occasions – in 2002, 2006 and 2014 – and started the better of the two teams at Churchill Park.

The two sides went in locked at 7-7 at half-time, though, with Lavenia Tinai's try cancelling out a 50-metre effort from Samoa’s Apaau Mailau.

Fijiana came into the second half with a much more structured approach and were clinical in 'the red zone'.

A clean break and offload from first-half try-scorer Tinai enabled Pricilla Siata to have a clear run to the line before Mela Matanatabu crossed for her side's third.

Fiji continued to pile the pressure on Samoa, and in the dying minutes, Ada Dansey crashed her way through several players to secure the try bonus point.

The performance left Fijiana head coach Alifereti Doviverata more than satisfied. 


"We came here for a win and the girls did just that, they executed our structure well which got us what we wanted today, a win," he said.

The two sides are expected to meet again on the tournament's final day with a place at RWC 2021 in New Zealand the prize for the winner.

Papua New Guinea, beaten 65-12 by Samoa on Monday, sat out round two following the withdrawal of Tonga on medical grounds which has resulted in a change to the qualification pathway for the region.

In the day's other match, the Blacks Ferns Development XV ran in eight unanswered tries to beat Australia A 50-0, keeping the opposition scoreless for the second match running to the delight of captain Arihiana Marino-Tauhinu.

"I'm really proud of the girls, the execution was really good and I'm just super-proud of the effort," she said.

The Black Ferns Development XV dominated the opening half, racing out to a 26-0 lead at the break with hooker Luka Connor touching down twice at the back of a powerful maul. Further tries from full-back Olivia McGoverne and debutant back-row Ilisapeta Molia added to Australia A's woes.

Despite playing with the wind the Wallaroos hopefuls were unable to wrestle momentum back and they conceded three further tries after the break. Prop Leilani Perese crashed over twice, doubling her tally for the tournament in the process, and she was joined on the scoresheet by  Martha Lolohea and centre Kilisitina Moata'ane.

Jennifer Khalik
Women's Feature News Women in Rugby
History-making Khalik keen to lead by example
Jennifer Khalik hopes to inspire more Pacific Islanders to follow in her footsteps after she became the first Fijian medical trainer to deliver the World Rugby Level 2 Immediate Care in Rugby course.
Ireland's Joy Neville
Women's Rugby World Cup News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Watch LIVE rugby TODAY … Ireland v USA, RWC 2010
Ireland and the USA served up a pool-stage classic at Rugby World Cup 2010 — and you can relive all the action this Sunday.
041120 - Seven CONSUR - 020 - Brasil
Women's Sevens News Women in Rugby
Brazilian pioneers continue to open new roads as referees
Former Brazilian internationals Natasha Olsen and Cristiana Futuro Mühlbauer have risen in the refereeing ranks both in their country and the region.
Joy Neville - Rugby World Cup 2017
Women's Feature News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Between the Lines: Joy Neville
World Rugby Referee Award 2017 recipient Joy Neville joins Sean Maloney on the latest episode of the Between the Lines podcast and discusses the match officials she looks up to.
World Rugby logo - one to use for generic releases
Media release Junior Women's Men's News Women in Rugby mz-advisory
World Rugby creates access to optional domestic law trials to further reduce COVID-19 risk
The World Rugby Executive Committee has approved 10 optional law trials which are designed to provide national member unions with COVID-19 transmission risk reduction options if required.
Alhambra Nievas - Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens 2017 - Women's
Women's News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Nievas: World Rugby committed to supporting female referees
World Rugby’s Referee Development Manager, Alhambra Nievas is confident that progress made in the support of female match officials can be maintained amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
2020 HSBC Sevens
Women's Sevens News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Watch LIVE rugby TODAY … Doubleheader at the HSBC New Zealand Sevens 2020
Fans were treated to some brilliant action as Canada, France, Australia and the USA contested two matches that had a huge bearing on the outcome of the women's tournament in Hamilton.
Sarah Abdul Baki
Women's News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Five women in the middle
At the beginning of a referee-themed week, we look at five women who are helping to blaze a trail for female match officials.
5th Place Play-off: USA v Canada
Women's Rugby World Cup News Tournament News Women in Rugby
USA trust in basics to beat Canada at RWC 2010
World Rugby Hall of Fame inductee Phaidra Knight remembers the Rugby World Cup 2010 fifth-place play-off, in which the USA edged old rivals Canada at Surrey Sports Park.
Pool C: Canada v Sweden
Olympics Women's News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Between the Lines: Heather Moyse
World Rugby Hall of Fame inductee Heather Moyse opens up about her double life as an international rugby player and Olympic bobsledder on a special episode of the Between the Lines podcast.