APIA, SAMOA – WEDNESDAY 22 MARCH 2017: The announcement by World Rugby for more Tier One Tests matches annually with the Pacific Islands has been welcomed by the Samoa Rugby Union.
SRU CEO Faleomavaega Vincent Fepuleai says it is great news for Pacific Island Rugby with more tests matches with England and France to be visiting the Pacific Islands next year. He said the success of SRU and Samoa hosting the All Blacks, the No.1 Team in the World has helped.
On national teams performances, Faleomavaega says the Sevens Program is progressing with huge improvement all-round and Sir Gordon is working hard to build up a player depth of 7’s players.
“Whilst results have been mixed, Sir Gordon has indicated it’s not a quick fix. The Union is working hard behind the scene to provide all the support to the management and the players,” he told Talamua.
Samoa A has lost all its 3 games in the recent Pacific Challenge Cup Tournament in Fiji.
“Whilst results have been disappointing, it has provided the Manu Samoa Head Coach the opportunity for the fringe and potential local players to press for selection into the Manu Samoa squad for the upcoming June/July test matches.
From SRU’s development objectives the Union has invested in the new look Super 9 concept to ensure:
- The best players on island are playing in a Competition for an extended period of time consistently at a higher standard. Quality instead of Quantity. It removes all social rugby players participation.
- Ensure the competition is televised weekly to offer each Franchises commercial opportunities for Sponsorship and attract public interest back to rugby.
- All the Franchises have been directed to entice Commercial thinking and oriented Administrators into their Franchise Board.
- Compulsory qualified Coaches only to Coach. The Union over the last eight months has invested in up-skilling Coaches which must attain the required World Rugby minimal levels and have also hosted Administrators trainings for Team Managers.
- Union Names and Provincial names have been deliberately disregarded for obvious reasons to iron out unnecessary village and provincial rivalries by naming each franchise in commercially driven names. This will allow wider support for each franchise.
- SRU has full ownership of the Event and have prepared the operational side to the highest standards as modeled around the Super 18 concept. SRU has ensured all Franchises is in compliance with its’ Terms of Participation Agreement.
- SRU has implemented stern warnings to Franchises with zero tolerance for disciplinary issues both on and off the field.
- SRU will provide all the Franchises backroom support to ensure proper acquittal of funds and to ensure yearly financials is compiles and audited. SRU has compiles a booklet to provide a full clarification of the Tournament concepts, schedules and help assist the Franchises on areas they may secure commercial opportunities.
- The competition will fulfill SRU’s vision for greater depth of local players available to select its National Teams, this long term goal will also alleviate costly reliance on overseas based players.
The event will be officially launched on 31st March.