Samoan players have turn to the Flying Fijians for both ‘inspiration and confidence’ ahead of their decisive Rugby World Cup clash against Argentina tomorrow.
The Fijians made a strong statement on Monday as they handed the Wallabies a disastrous 22-15 defeat after 69 years.
Head coach Seilala Mapusua said “there are no second chances” for Samoa as they look ahead to their crucial clash with the Los Pumas.
“The boys have realised we are in the tournament, we’ve arrived at the party. There are no second chances so this week the whole squad, there has been a real lift and energy. We know we have got a huge game coming up,” Mapusua told RugbyPass.
“We had confidence before the game, confidence that Fiji were going to get over and also confidence in what we are doing. That’s awesome to see our Pacific brothers doing really well and we are always going to be behind them until we have to play each other.”
“We are proud of them and of course we are going to take inspiration and confidence from that. But I’d be more inclined to take confidence from the work and preparation this group of men have done over the past few months.”
Samoa have made three changes to their side that beat Chile a week ago, with Paul Alo-Emile and Brian Alainu’u’ese coming into the forward pack.
Former Hurricane Ben Lam will also make his first appearance at the 2023 Rugby World Cup after being named on the left wing.
Ex-Wallaby Christian Leali’ifano will run out alongside former All Blacks Steven Luatua and Charlie Faumuina, although the absence of playmaker Lima Sopoaga is a potential concern.
Samoa will face Argentina at 3.45am at Saint-Etienne.