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Samoa closer to booking Rugby World Cup spot after win against Tonga

Auckland, New Zealand

Samoa vs Tonga. 10 July 2021. Photo: World Rugby

Samoa is one step closer to booking a Rugby World Cup 2023 spot after toppling Tonga 42-13 in Auckland on Saturday, July 10.

The first half was a tight game with the score close at half-time, Samoa leading 6-3.

However, in the second half, Samoa was too powerful and racked up the points with five tries by Ray Niuia, Alamanda Motuga, Ed Fidow, Stacey Ili, and Henry Taefu.

While Tonga managed to score one try by Viliami Taulani.

The two teams will meet again on Saturday, July 17 in Hamilton, New Zealand.

Should Samoa avoid defeat by 29 points or more on Saturday, they will secure the Oceania 1 spot for the Rugby World Cup 2023, according to World Rugby.

The winner will take their place in Pool D at France 2023, alongside England, Japan, Argentina and the Americas 2 qualifier.

Meanwhile, World Rugby said the losing team will still have two more opportunities to make it to the Rugby World Cup 2023.

They will face the Cook Islands on 24 July for the right to compete in the Asia/Pacific play-off, and if unsuccessful in that cross-continental play-off, they will enter the Final Qualification Tournament.