Samoa vow to ‘give it everything’ against Boks

Samoa coach Stephen Betham says they will fight fire with fire

Samoa coach Stephen Betham says that they will fight fire with fire against
South Africa and have vowed to come out “all guns blazing” in their
Pool B match on Saturday.

Samoa produced a workmanlike performance in their 25-16 victory over the United
States in on Sunday which has kept the Pacific Nations side ahead of South Africa
in the Pool on points.

Coach Betham believes that Japan’s stunning 34-32 triumph over the Springboks
had been a huge jolt for the major nations.

“The tier one nations have got a wake cup call from yesterday and our
surprise factor has gone,” said Betham, who claimed they had not watched
the match only seen the result at the end.

“They will come at us with all guns blazing.”

“We’re going to give it everything and we’ll be ready for the backlash.”

Betham, however, didn’t believe that the Japanese victory had changed the dynamics
of the pool which his team are seeded to take one of the two places in the quarter-finals,
which would be the third time in their history but first since 1995.

Samoa are ranked 10th in the World while Scotland are ranked at 12.

“I don’t think it changes anything,” he said.

“If anything it has woken up everybody. This is a World Cup and every
team brings its best,” he said.

But Betham is not sure the gap is narrowing significantly.

“We look for consistency in pour performances and we haven’t struck that
yet. One week we play well and then the next we don’t.”

Betham said that one thing which would be key against the ‘Boks, who like the
Samoans like to mix it physically, would be his team keeping their cool as they
did on Sunday. Discipline has been a bugbear for them in the past.

Indeed Japan coach Eddie Jones had said he would be prepared to pay for a ticket
to the game in Birmingham which he predicted would be a bash festival.

“The number one positive from today was was our discipline,” said
Betham.

“If we can keep all 15 people on the park then we have a chance.”

“I am satisfied today because I think it is one of first games with nobody
of our side being sin binned, so it is a good start.

“We will build on that. We know if we don’t keep our discipline we will
be on the back foot but we have been working really hard on that.”

American counterpart Mike Tolkin was disappointed with the lack of discipline
shown by his team, which cost them dearly in terms of points, and on missing
out on a bonus point.

But for conceding a load of penalties they matched the Samoans in tries scored,
two apiece, including the best try of the match, by captain Chris Wyles created
by impressive Ireland-born fly-half AJ MacGinty.

Tolkin still held out hope that they could snatch their first ever spot in
the last eight.

“We just need to take our chances,” said Tolkin.

“We didn’t take a beating and were on the front foot for a lot of the
game.

“We just have to capitalise on the chances we create.”

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