On November 23rd, the Georgian national rugby union team played its third and final November test match against Samoa (Manu Samoa). Georgia narrowly won the game 16-15.
The Georgian Lelos vs. Manu Samoa
By Tatia Megeneishvili
Tuesday, November 26
The game kicked off at 16:30 at a nearly full Mikheil Meskhi Stadium. Before the match, Samoa’s rugby players performed their Sivu Tau war dance. They have performed this dance before every game since the 1991 Rugby World Cup.
Georgia opened the scoring in the fifth minute with a penalty kick by Merab Kvirikashvili. Five minutes later, Alapaati Leiua scored a try for the visitors, but George Pisi did not score from the ensuing conversion, 5-3 to Samoa. In the 19th minute, Kvirikashvili scored again from a penalty kick. In the 27th minute Jack Lam scored another try for Samoa, with this time Pisi successfully scoring from the conversion. The first half ended with a score 6:12 in favor of Samoa.
In the second half Georgian team came out reinvigorated and fighting and in the 42nd minute Merab Sharikadze scored a try after what Kvirikashvili scored from the conversion. 13:12 in favor of Georgia. In the 70th minute Tusi Pisi scored from another penalty kick to make the score 13:15, in favor of Samoa. In the last minute, the Georgian national team gained a penalty kick which Kvirikashvili successfully scored from to make the score 16:15. Georgia then withstood a late Samoan onslaught to hang on for the win.
Earlier in the month, Georgia lost to the U.S.A. 23:25 and beat Canada 19:15. Georgia is 17th in the International Rugby Board rankings, while Samoa is 8th.