New Zealand downs Samoa in Four Nations Epic

Reading Time: 2 minutes

New Zealand Kiwis stole victory in the final minutes to secure their Four Nations finals date with a  14 – 12 win over Toa Samoa in a Herculean bout this afternoon at Toll Stadium, Whangarei.

After facing off with the traditional pre-match war dances, the Samoan Siva Toa and the New Zealand Haka, the two teams traded heavy blows early.

Quick hands down New Zealand’s right side had Jason Nightingale charging for the line, but Tim Simona brought him down.

Tautau Moga snatched a sloppy pass from Pita Hiku and sprinted 80 meters to score for Samoa, though Tim Lafai was unable to convert.

Shortly after down the other end, Kieran Foran caught a sneaky pass from Shaun Johnson and darted his way to the line.

Samoa coughed up a try, but were undeterred, as Ben Roberts produced a brilliantly deft grubber collected by Daniel Vidot to score in the corner, with Lafai again unable to capitalise with the conversion.

Tempers flared at times and Joseph Leilua found himself face to face with a grinning Manu Vatuvei.

Both players were exceptional in their nation’s colours, imitating front rowers by hammering the defence, mainly each other.

The Samoans faced multiple surges of black jerseys but kept forcing errors. Johnson probed, ducked, weaved but couldn’t crack them.

Vatuvai was denied a try due to obstruction, and New Zealand finished the half trailing 8-6.

Buoyed by their lead, Samoa came out of the sheds after half-time with a purpose, pinning the Kiwis inside their 20 then scoring though Leilua in the corner, who fended off opponents as if they were small children.

Also Read:  Super Rugby Aotearoa Week 10: Highlanders vs Hurricanes

Dominating physically as well as through completions and possession, Samoa were still only up 12 – 6 over a home team who had just dismantled the Australian Kangaroo’s last week, and as ill-discipline and fatigue began to creep into the Samoan side, New Zealand sensed their chance.

The Kiwis smashed their way up the field then unleashed a string of passes and offloads, culminating in Nightingale touching down in the corner.

Unable to convert from out wide, Johnson was nonetheless wreaking havoc with his kicking, passing and running game, but the clock was ticking.

With five minutes to go, the New Zealand half-back produced a diamond play by sprinting across the field, shaking off Peter Godinet then offloading out the back, where the ball eventually found Shaun Kenny-Dowall slamming it down over the try line. 14 – 12.

A line drop out cut down Toa Samoa’s time for a final resurgence, and while the never-say-die Leilua intercepted a pass and took off down the paddock, his pass was deemed to have gone forward.

Despite the disappointment from the loss, Samoa came away from the match emboldened by their passion and commitment, being able to match it with a heavy weight like New Zealand, and will look to take the fight the Australians next week.

And while assured a spot in Wellington on November 15th, New Zealand will not be given a respite next week, as they face an English side next hell-bent on World Cup Semi-final revenge.



Tautau Moga

Daniel Vidot

Joseph Leilua


Tim Lafai 0/3

New Zealand


Nightingale (2)

Shaun Kenny-Dowall


Shaun Johnson 1/3

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

The Torchbearers Of Modern Football

We are standing at the end of an era that was tinted with brightness and glam. Two of the greatest sportsmen ever to grace the surface of earth are at the twilight of their careers. They are aliens, some say. Some say they are superheroes in shorts. Two names at the heart of the footballing world, for the best part of two decades. The torchbearers of modern day football. The pace-setters of the business...

Different Options For Purchasing Golf Shoes

Golf is one of the most popular sports among wealthy and upper middle class men. While some play golf competitively, others play golf as a hobby and for networking with others. The performance of the golfer depends to some extent on the golfing gear and equipment which he is using. Usually golfers are wearing special golf shoes, which are designed so that the golfer can play his shots comfortably, without slipping. Hence many of...

Russell Wilson Is An All-Time Great QB

Russell Wilson, 0 MVPs, 0 MVP votes, 0 respect. He is one of the best quarterbacks I've ever seen, and he is showing himself to be the MVP so far this year. Russell Wilson at every stage of his career has consistently been elite and has carried the Seahawks into relevancy. He is underrated, has been elite, and has been one of the best QBs in the world since he's gotten here. How is it that...

Super Fan Saturday – Rugby South Africa

In what has been an extremely long-awaited return for the game, South Africa will host their very first rugby game: Super Fan Saturday, since the sport was postponed back in March 2020. While this year may have been challenging times for the majority of the world, a doubleheader action-packed Saturday will bring something to look forward to locally. and keep every South African rugby fan at the edge of their seats. One of the nation's...

AFL Finals Locked In

This weekend's results conclude the heavily disrupted Australian Football League regular season, turning attention towards the Finals series in October.
Also Read:  Super Rugby Aotearoa Week 10: Highlanders vs Hurricanes
Across 18 rounds spanning six weeks, the race for the coveted Premiership trophy has been whittled down from 18 clubs to just eight. All that separates them from the 2020 flag now is four weeks of playoff matches that will culminate in the Grand Final. Port Adelaide secured the minor premiership by defeating Collingwood in the...

Rabada, Stonis star as Super Over settles dramatic IPL game

Kagiso Rabada and Marcus Stoinis starred for the Delhi Capitals as they controlled their nerves to edge Kings XI Punjab in Super Over. Rabada dismissed KL Rahul and Nicholas Pooran while conceding just 2 runs in the deciding over. Rishabh Pant and Shreyas Iyer batted for Delhi in the Super Over and settled the game in 2 balls. Heartbreak for Mayank Agarwal It was a heartbreak for Mayank Agarwal who scored 89 runs in 60 balls, but...

America’s Largest Amateur League Shines in Baseball’s “Lost Season”

2020 will forever be remembered as baseball’s lost season. The sport was shattered due to the COVID-19 pandemic virus outbreak. Baseball fans were out of luck this summer as they were entirely restricted from attending any professional or semi-pro live games. Watching on television or live stream wasn’t much better. Most of the MLB season was cancelled including the pre-season, the much anticipated Iowa Field of Dreams game, Puerto Rico series, London Series and All...

IPL: Mumbai Indians Lose Season Opener

Mumbai Indians lost an Indian Premier League (IPL) opener for the 8th successive year following a 5-wicket loss to Chennai Super Kings. Having lost the first game of the season in the last 7 years, Mumbai might have thought this was their time, as they were on a 5-game winning run against CSK. However, ex Mumbai Indians player Ambati Rayudu and South African superstars Faf du Plessis and Lungi Ngidi ensured that it didn’t...

When Did Formula One Begin?

If you ask virtually anyone the world over a simple question – “What is Formula One” they will probably get the answer correct.  It’s a car race!  Even though that might be a very simple reply (a better answer would be it’s the highest class of international single-seater auto-racing!) there is another question that will probably stump them.  That question is “When did Formula One begin?”. In order to answer the question properly we need...

Stanley Cup Finals: Tampa Bay Lightning vs Dallas Stars

After nearly two months of play in the hub cities of Toronto and Edmonton, one more team, either the Tampa Bay Lightning or the Dallas Stars will have their bubble burst as the other emerges as the 2020 Stanley Cup Finals champions. The Stars won two games against the Lightning in the regular season, each in overtime (4-3 on December 19; 3-2 on January 27) The Lightning representing the Eastern Conference made it to the...

Social Connect


Trending Now

Super Fan Saturday – Rugby South Africa

In what has been an extremely long-awaited return for the game, South Africa will host their very first rugby game: Super Fan Saturday, since...
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x