24 Nov 2014

Sport: Manu Samoa management proud of effort despite off-field dramas

2:16 pm on 24 November 2014

The Manu Samoa team has disbanded at the end of their Northern tour with issues between the playing group and rugby union still unresolved.

Last month a group of senior players raised concerns regarding the governance and management of the Samoan Rugby Union and threatened to boycott yesterday's test against England.

The strike was averted following intervention from World Rugby and the Players Association, and the Samoans were beaten 28-9 at Twickenham.

SRU officials failed to attend two meetings over the past week but team manager, Namulau'ulu Sami Leota, says representations from the Union are in contact with these bodies.

Namulau'ulu admits it wasn't the ideal background to prepare for such a big test match but says the players still gave their all.

"We prepared what we could prepare, despite what happened, but we had a positive preparation during the week but obviously there was a cloud above us and we're just hoping for positive outcomes at the end of discussions. The issue that was at hand also motivated the boys a lot more to perform on the field and the result has come out and it's what it is at the moment. We're happy with they gave it all and again there are areas that we need to improve on and we just have to move on from here".

Namulau'ulu Sami Leota and head coach Stephen Betham will remain in the UK for a few more days for meetings about next year's Rugby World Cup.

It was a mixed end for the Pacific Island teams in their final European tour matches,

Tonga suffered their first defeat on tour, thumped 37-12 by Scotland in Kilmarnock while Fiji edged the USA 20-14 in France.