The Tongans were the stars of the show today at Eden Park, as they secured a historic 16-12 victory over Australia, following their 14-6 victory over Great Britain a week earlier.
The game was the third of a triple header in Auckland, which began with a convincing Fijian victory over Samoa, with the Batis winning 44-18, with their star being Viliame Kikau, who scored two of their eight tries.
The second game of the afternoon saw Great Britain fall to a disappointing 12-8 defeat to New Zealand, in what was generally viewed as the least attractive of the three games, with the British showing limited attacking skills after the game was level 2-2 at the break. The Kiwis had lost their stand-off Kieran Foran with a dislocated shoulder after only five minutes, but they were inspired by a superb performance from their fullback Roger Tuivasa-Sheck.
Fiji 44 Samoa 18
Fiji: T – Joe Lovodua (5), D’Rhys Miller (8), Viliame Kikau (14, 36), Joseph Ratuvakacereivalu (23),Isaac Lumelume (52), Brayden Wiliame (62), Kevin Naiqama (66); G – Brandon Wakeham 5, Siti Moceidreke 1.
Samoa: T – Tim Lafai (26), Jorge Taufua (50, 77), Ronaldo Mulitalo (79); G – Tim Lafai 1
New Zealand 12 Great Britain 8
NZ: T – Jamayne Isaako (48), Corey Harawira-Naera (54); G – Jamayne Isaako 2
GB: T – Daryl Clark (68); G – Gareth Widdop 2
Tongan Invitational XIII 16 Australia 12
Tonga: T – Will Hopoate (20), Michael Jennings (45), Tevita Pangai Junior (53); G – Kotoni Staggs 2
Australia: T – Jack Wighton (26), Paul Vaughan (30); G – Latrell Mitchell 2
Full match reports, photographs and analysis will feature in Monday’s edition of League Express.