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Tonga end World Cup on high with seven-try win over Romania

By PA
Kyren Taumoefolau of Tonga celebrates with teammates after scoring his team's seventh try during the Rugby World Cup France 2023 match between Tonga and Romania at Stade Pierre Mauroy on October 08, 2023 in Lille, France. (Photo by David Ramos - World Rugby/World Rugby via Getty Images)

Tonga beat Romania 45-24 in the final Pool B game at the World Cup.

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The teams came into the Lille clash without a point between them but the Pacific Islanders finished strongly to ensure they exited the competition with a win.

Although Alin Conache missed an early penalty for Romania, Tonga started with purpose and were rewarded through tries from Solomone Kata and George Moala, the latter of which was converted by William Havili.

Conache kicked a penalty to make it 14-3 to Tonga after 20 minutes but Afusipa Taumoepeau went over soon after and Havili again converted.

However, Romania scored a try of their own in the 31st minute when Cristi Boboc touched down after a well worked line-out. Conache converted to reduce the deficit to 11 points.

After Tonga’s Leva Fifita was shown yellow for a shoulder charge, Romania used the extra man to score again.

Florin Surugiu, in his last international game before retiring, broke away after a scrum and evaded the defenders to cross the whitewash. Conache again converted and the deficit was just four points.

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Ten minutes after the turnaround Tonga had breathing space when Sione Vailanu’s try was converted by Havili.

However, battling Romania responded well with a try from Marius Simionescu. Conache again added the extras and the gap was down to four points again.

That was as good as it got for them though, as Pita Ahki crossed for a try which Havili again converted with 18 minutes remaining.

Four minutes later Kata had his second try and, after Conache had been sin-binned, Kyren Taumoefolau got Tonga’s seventh try to round off the scoring in an entertaining contest.

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Red and White Dynamight 2 hours ago
Duhan van der Merwe hat-trick sinks sloppy England to win Calcutta Cup

Up the Jocks ! a great team effort and 4 victories v on the bounce v their greatest rivals for those north of Hadrians. But, of course, before the celebrations survive the first pint of McEwans, it seems for some this Calcutta Cup match was merely 1 man v 15. What exactly is it about Sth Africans that make them such insufferable bores ? you rarely see Kiwis claiming Ireland victories (incl 3 x NZers) or Aussies for that matter (X1). You never see Samoans claiming France/England victories (Tuilagis). Or Fijians claim All Black victories. Scotland have had some great Kiwi-born players (S.Lineen/B.Laney/J.Leslie) - no surprise given their heritage - but they supported them as their ‘2nd team’. If anything they applaud their countrymen for taking opportunities and bettering themselves as professionals and, hopefully, competing on the World stage too. It takes some stratospheric level of stupid to ignore the opaque boundaries and qualifications that now allow Japan to be competitive, Portugal to win a RWC game, Argentinians to play for Italy, New Zealanders to dominate Tongan and Samoan teams - and not celebrate that World Rugby is more competitive and better for it. Everywhere on social media, even when the post has zero to do with Sth Africans (schoolboy rugby being the most obvious barrel-scraping eg - these are KIDS), they pile in and try to claim the “we are better/stronger/faster” with such voluminous levels of obnoxious bile, that it poisons the mere celebration of the sport itself. These are not ‘rugby fans’ that can marvel at the Game they Play in Heaven, but rather some misplaced insecure-fuelled poison that they need to extract from deep inside their psyche. Its hard to understand the exact reason for the massive chip on their shoulders and their desperation for the victimhood/noone-loves-us-we-dont-care, but it seems accelerated with their LOTTO Cup 1-pt wins, like gasoline on the fire. Obsessed with ‘cheating’ refs and ‘cheating’ opposition (Rassies video bloopers during Lions tour; McCaw’s whole career) and celebrating their own thuggery (#JUSTICE4 the dirtiest player in pro-rugby history), when luck suddenly goes their way (1995 Final vs an acutely comprimised ABs; Kilosi<->Cane cards in 2023 Final) or their players escape adequate penalty (Etzebeth 1-handed non-intercepts; Kolbe illegal chargedown; Etzebeth cynically retreating in the AB backline) so obviously that its clearly been coached, then suddenly its AOK as long its SA that benefit directly from it. The schizophrenic nature of Sth Africans presents them as good company in person - and lets face it, theyre EVERYWHERE now and cant get out of their own country fast enough - but as anonymous keyboard ninjas their true nature shines out as one beset with a dark undercurrent of toxic self-absorption. It appears that the bravado appears only under the protection of anonymity, a cowardice of insufferable reverse-flagellation to make themselves feel proud when the mirror stares back at them. Give yourselves a long slow clap. Well done to the entire Scotland team including all those born south of Hadrians Wall. Playing a fantastic fast pace of fluid ball-in-hands rugby that seems almost foreign to other teams. Och aye the noo.

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