Tonga overcomes Samoa in rugby league - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Tonga overcomes Samoa in rugby league

By Steve Mascord 07/10/2005 10:16:39 PM Comments (0)

Wests Tigers coaching duo Royce Simmons and Bryan Hider have continued their golden run when they took Tonga to a bruising International League win over Samoa.

Still recovering from the joint venture sides premiership celebrations, assistant coach Simmons and head trainer Hider watched as the Tongan's raced to a 26-0 half time lead at Campbelltown Stadium before winning 34-20.

"There's actually a bit of Tiger in them," a proud Simmons said after the international, organised by the Australian Rugby League to help the countries prepare for the 2008 World Cup.

"Like the Tigers, they really get stuck in on the training paddock and when they come off the field they like to play a bit of music.

"In some ways its been hard to miss some of the grand final celebrations but I made a commitment and its been an honour to be involved."

While the winner's line up featured NRL stars like Willie Manu, Richard Fa'aoso and Manase Manoukafoa, the key men were a pair of London Broncos.

Centre Tyrone Smith, brother of Wallaby George, scored a brace of tries while halfback Feleti Mateo had the ball on a string for most of the night. Between them they scored 16 of their sides points.

Mateo, who rejoins Parramatta next season after a stint on loan in London, said the fact the Samoan's turned their back on the Tongan war dance before kick off had fired his side up.

"I think the idea is to be the last team to finish and that was us," Mateo said.

"When they did that, it just took things to another level."

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