Samoa announce Rugby World Cup Squad
Samoa is the first nation to name their squad ahead of the upcoming Rugby World Cup this Autumn, and their unit includes 12 United Kingdom-based players.
London Irish flanker Ofisa Treviranus, who has 32 caps will lead the Samoan charge as Captain after overcoming a neck injury he suffered against the All Blacks earlier this summer.
Vice-captain is Newcastle Falcons giant veteran winger Alesana Tuilagi, who will be playing in his third World Cup, and he will be joined in the wing ranks by Hurricanes flyer Tim Nanai-Williams. His Falcons teammate Kane Thompson is also in the group.
Northampton trio Kahn Fotuali’i along with Ken and George Pisi have all been named in the group while Sale’s Tj Loane and commanding centre Johnny Leota also made the cut.
Prop Logovi’i Mulipola of the Leicester Tigers will play in his third World Cup while Bristol pair Anthony Perenise and Jack Lam also made the squad.
New Cardiff Blues recruit Rey Lee-Lo has also been included in their 31-man party.
Some notable names missing from the list include veteran front-rower Census Johnston, flanker Faifili Levave and outside backs Sinoti Sinoti, Paul Williams and Ah See Tuala.
Samoa kicks off their World Cup campaign against the USA on the 20th September and are joined in Pool B by South Africa, Scotland and Japan.
With the Springboks’ likely to top the pool, the match against the Scots could see the winner going through in second place
Samoa World Cup squad:
Forwards: Ole Avei (Bordeaux Begles), Manu Leiataua (Aurillac), Motu Matu’u (Wellington Hurricanes), Viliamu Afatia (Agen), Jake Grey (Samoa Scopa), Logovi’i Mulipola (Leicester Tigers), Anthony Perenise (Bristol), Sakaria Taulafo (Stade Français), Fa’atiga Lemalu (Bourgoin), Filo Paulo (Benetton Treviso), Joe Tekori (Toulouse), Kane Thompson (Newcastle Falcons), Maurie Fa’asavalu (Oyonnax), Alafoti Faosiliva (Bath), Jack Lam (Bristol), Ofisa Treviranus (capt, London Irish), TJ Ioane (Sale Sharks), Sanele Vavae Tuilagi (Carcassonne).
Backs: Vavao Afemai (Samoa Vaiala), Kahn Fotuali’i (Northampton Saints), Patrick Fa’apale (Samoa Vaiala), Tusi Pisi (Suntory Sungoliath), Michael Stanley (unattached), Rey Lee-Lo (Cardiff Blues), Johnny Leota (Sale Sharks), Paul Perez (Coastal Sharks), George Pisi (Northampton Saints), Fa’atoina Autagavaia (Nevers), Ken Pisi (Northampton Saints), Alesana Tuilagi (Newcastle Falcons), Tim Nanai-Williams (Ricoh Black Rams).