Sports

Tonga qualify for 2019 World Cup after Fiji beat Samoa

Tonga qualify for 2019 World Cup after Fiji beat Samoa

The Pacific Islanders have qualified for the major tournament thanks to Fiji's 38-16 victory over Samoa, meaning the men in blue can no longer catch the Tongans in the current standings. Samoa, meanwhile, heads to a two-match playoff with the runner-up of European qualifying.

Samoa's loss handed Oceania's second berth to Tonga, which is now in the same pool with England, France, Argentina and the United States. This morning's result means they will now face either Czech Republic or Portugal to determine in a play-off for a place in Pool A, where they will join Ireland, Scotland, Japan and a qualifier from the European Nations Cup.

Fiji qualified last week after they beat Tonga 14-10 in Nuku'alofa and as the top-ranked Oceania team will join Australia, Wales, Georgia and either Canada or Uruguay in Pool D in Japan.

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Samoa can still reach the World Cup through the repechage qualification series.

They took an early lead Saturday with Seniloli's first try, created by a pass from Volavola which allowed an inside break from Akipusi Qera.

Seniloli scored his second when winger Vereniki Goneva made a powerful break down the right flank.


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