|Union||American Samoa Rugby Union|
|Head coach||Toma Akuino Leota|
|World Rugby ranking|
|Current||105 (as of November 23rd, 2020)|
|American Samoa 0–55 Western Samoa |
|American Samoa 30–15 Solomon Islands |
(22 August 2015)
|American Samoa 0–55 Western Samoa |
The American Samoa national rugby union team, also known as the "Talavalu", represents American Samoa in international rugby union.
The Talavalu is the name of a traditional Samoan war weapon, originally carved out of ironwood. As can be seen on the right side of the American Samoa Rugby Union logo, it resembles a club but has eight diamond-shaped teeth carved on one edge. Translated, "tala" is teeth, and "valu" is eight.
National development of rugby union in American Samoa has been overshadowed by the popularity of American football since the 1970s. Unlike neighbouring Samoa, American Samoa has had limited international rugby competition. Most of American Samoa's matches have been played at the South Pacific Games.
American Samoa's first international 15's match was at the 1983 South Pacific Games in Apia, where they lost 55–0 to Western Samoa (as it was then called).They did not make the final stages of that tournament. American Samoa fared much better at the 1991 South Pacific Games in Port Moresby, notching up wins against Solomon Islands and French Polynesia. While they lost 34–7 to Western Samoa in the final, the American Samoans won the rugby 15's silver medal.
The South Pacific Games (now called the Pacific Games) subsequently switched to hosting rugby 7s in preference to rugby 15s, and the ASRU, while still eligible for the FORU Oceania Cup, turned more of its attention toward the seven-a-side form of the game. American Samoa competed at the Pacific Games Rugby 7s in 2011, and the Oceania Rugby 7s in 2011 and 2012.
In 2015 the Talavalu made their first appearance at the Oceania Rugby Cup. They won their first match against the Solomon Islands 30-15.In their second game, they lost to Papua New Guinea 36-22. Their third game against Tahiti was also a loss, 8-20. The Talavalu's finished the tournament in third place.
Due to limited opportunities at home, notable American Samoan players have been selected in other national teams instead of American Samoa. Frank Solomon was the pioneer, playing for New Zealand in the 1930s; and Jerome Kaino was a key member of New Zealand's Rugby World Cup-winning teams in 2011 and 2015.American Samoans that have represented United States include Mose Timoteo, Valenise Malifa, the Suniula brothers (Andrew, Roland and Shalom) and Junior Sifa.
Squad for the 2015 Oceania Rugby Cup:
The Fiji national football team is Fiji's national men's team and is controlled by the governing body of football in Fiji, the Fiji Football Association. The team plays most of their home games at the ANZ National Stadium in Suva.
The Pacific Games is a multi-sport event, much like the Olympic Games, with participation exclusively from countries around the Pacific Ocean. It is held every four years and began in 1963.
The Tahiti national rugby union team is a third tier rugby union team, representing the island of Tahiti in French Polynesia, an overseas collectivity of France. They first played in 1971 and have played numerous games to date, most against rivals Cook Islands and several against Niue. Other games have been played against Samoa, Wallis and Futuna, Papua New Guinea and Tonga. France played a match against Tahiti at the end of their 1979 tour and won 92–12. Plans to have annual "test" match series against Pacific island neighbours, New Caledonia have been put on hold, due to time, availability, finances, and coaching and refereeing resources. They have yet to qualify for the Rugby World Cup. Rugby union in Tahiti is administered by the Fédération Tahitienne de Rugby de Polynésie Française. Currently, players who have represented or played for the Tahiti national rugby team, are eligible to represent France. However, playing at a professional level can only enable this. At present there are several Tahitian professional rugby players abroad in France's Top 14 and Pro D2 professional competition.
The Tahiti Rugby Union is the governing body for rugby union in Tahiti. It was founded in 1989 and became affiliated to the International Rugby Board in 1994.
The Cook Islands is a third tier rugby union playing nation. They began playing international rugby in the early 1971. Thus far, the Cook Islands have not made an appearance at any of the World Cups.
The Tuvalu national football team is the international football team of Tuvalu. Football in Tuvalu is played at the club and international level. The Tuvalu national football team draws from players in the Tuvalu A-Division and trains at the Tuvalu Sports Ground on Funafuti. The national team competes in the Pacific Games. The national team is controlled by the Tuvalu National Football Association (TNFA), which is an associate member of the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) but not a member of FIFA.
Sports in American Samoa are slightly different from sports in Samoa. The main difference is that Samoans in American Samoa are more likely to follow or play American sports such as American football, basketball, and baseball. Western Samoans are more likely to follow or play rugby union, rugby league, and netball. Sports such as mixed martial arts, boxing, professional wrestling, and volleyball are popular among most ethnic Samoans regardless of location.
The American Samoa women's national football team represents American Samoa in international women's association football. The team is controlled by the Football Federation American Samoa (FFAS) and managed by Beulah Oney, a former player. The Veterans Memorial Stadium is their home ground and their only goalscorer is Jasmine Makiasi, with only one goal.
Rugby union in American Samoa is a growing sport.
The New Caledonia national rugby union team represents New Caledonia in rugby union. The team has been playing international rugby since the 1960s. All their matches have been against other teams from Oceania.
Oceania Rugby, previously known as the Federation of Oceania Rugby Unions (FORU), is the regional governing body for rugby union in Oceania. It was founded in 2000 to represent the interests of Oceania rugby within World Rugby, the international governing body. It presently encompasses fourteen full members and two associate members.
The Oceania Cup is an international rugby union competition for countries and territories from Oceania with national teams in the developmental band. It is administered by Oceania Rugby.
The Oceania Women's Sevens is the regional championship for women's international rugby sevens in Oceania. The tournament is held over two days, typically on a weekend. It is sanctioned and sponsored by Oceania Rugby, which is the rugby union governing body for the region.
The Tuvalu National Football Association is the governing body of association football in Tuvalu. The Association is responsible for the Tuvalu national football team and the Tuvalu national futsal team.
Etimoni Timuani is a Tuvaluan sportsman. He is a footballer and sprinter specializing in the 100 m distance. Timuani is a father-of-two from Funafuti who works for the Tuvalu National Provident Fund, the national pension scheme.
The American Samoa Rugby Union, or ASRU, is the governing body for rugby union in American Samoa. It was established in 1990, and became fully affiliated to the International Rugby Board (IRB) in 2012.
The Solomon Islands Rugby Union Federation, or SIRUF, is the governing body for rugby union in Solomon Islands. It was established in the 1960s, but only became fully affiliated to the International Rugby Board (IRB) in 1999.
The 2015 Oceania Rugby Cup for national rugby union teams in the Oceania region was held in Papua New Guinea at the Lloyd Robson Oval in Port Moresby in August 2015. Papua New Guinea won the title by finishing on top of the table after completing the round-robin tournament undefeated.
Rugby union at the 1991 South Pacific Games was held at Port Moresby, the capital of Papua New Guinea, during September 1991. In the absence of Fiji and Tonga from the tournament, Western Samoa won the gold medal.
The 1985 South Pacific Mini Games were held at Rarotonga in the Cook Islands from 31 July to 9 August 1985. It was the second edition of the South Pacific Mini Games.