This will be a historic first Super Rugby Pacific match between the Fijian Drua and Moana Pasifika.
It will also be the fourth Super Rugby game to not feature a team from either Australia, New Zealand or South Africa (Jaguares – Argentina v Sunwolves – Japan).
- The Fijian Drua have won only one of their nine Super Rugby matches in Australia (L8), a 31-26 victory against the Melbourne Rebels (4 March 2022)
- Each of Moana Pasifika’s last two Super Rugby matches has been decided by a margin no greater than six points (L2).
- Only one of all Moana’s eight games in the competition was decided by a single figure (won 24-19 v Hurricanes – 25 March 2022).
- The Drua have lost their last eight Super Rugby matches in succession, including a 67-5 loss to the Hurricanes last time out – their biggest defeat in the history of the competition and the first time they’d conceded 50+ points in a game.
- The Fijian Drua (9) and Moana Pasifika (10) have won the fewest lineouts per game (inc. steals) of any teams.
- Only the Chiefs (10) have made more offloads per game than the Fijian Drua (9) and Moana Pasifika (9) in 2022.
- Fijian Drua has conceded 17 turnovers per game, the most of any team in the campaign – four per game more than Moana Pasifika (13).
- Drua (8) and Moana (8) have made fewer attacking 22m entries per game than any other team.
Players to watch
- William Havili has gained 250 metres from kick returns, the second-most by any player in the competition (Will Jordan – 473 for Crusaders).
- Apisalome Vota has made seven tackles resulting in a turnover, the most by any player, and three more than any Brumbies player.
We are waiting for the kick-off.
In the meantime, why not have a look at the match preview.
1.00: PEEEP! We are underway at CommBank Stadium in Western Sydney.
2.00: A few issues with the referees’ communication devices held up play before the start.
4.00: Drua has started very well, going through the phases, and looking dangerous.
6.00: TRY! A one-two between number eight Te Ahiwaru Cirikidaveta and inside centre Kalaveti Ravouvovu sees the Fijian Drua open the scoring. 5-0
7.00: CONVERSION! Teti Tela adds the extras. 7-0
8.00: TRY! It’s that man Vinaya Habosi again! The Fijian flyer scoops up a loose pass and races 70 metres down the righthand touchline to score under the posts. 12-0
9.00: CONVERSION! The kick is good. 14-0
12.00: Moana kick to the corner after earning a penalty for offside; however, Ray Niuia overthrows, and the Drua clears.
13.00: TRY! Solomone Funaki breaks down the blindside from a driving maul inside the Drua 22. Funaki bounced Onisi Ratave before beating Teti Tela to the line. 14-5
14.00: CONVERSION! Lincoln McClutchie adds the extras. 14-7
16.00: It’s taken 16 minutes for the first scrum of the game. Awesome!
18.00: Manasa Saulo knocks on Frank Lomani’s long pass for another scrum, this time to Moana.
21.00: Moana Pasifika has definitely had the better of the game since they scored. Fijian Drua is struggling a little bit with their handling, making too many errors.
24.00: Another penalty goes against the home team. Moana opts for scrum, but then Drua wins a penalty at the ruck. Tela calls for the tee.
25.00: PENALTY! Tela can’t miss from in front. 17-7
28.00: Willi Havili is tackled high, and the ball is shifted wide, but Solomone Kata is tackled short before losing the ball. Moana opts for another lineout.
31.00: Drua wins a relieving penalty after Moana botched another lineout. Both teams have the worst lineout success rates, in the mid 70%.
32.00: TRY! Vota gets his second of the season after taking Havili’s knock-on and running away to score under the sticks. Tela’s pin-point chip-kick caught Moana flatfooted, and Havili’s hands were not great. 22-7
33.00: CONVERSION! Tela can’t miss it. 24-7
35.00: Another turnover near the Drua line kills an attack.
37.00: TRY! Moana Pasifika finally gets their driving maul going, and Pole flops over the whitewash for his fifth try of the season. 24-12
38.00: MISS! The kick is wide. 24-12
41.00: Cirikidaveta leaves the field, he looks really groggy and needs help to go off after taking an elbow to the head.
42.00: Another good maul ends with a crossfield kick not gathered by Pasifika; however, the visitors get another crack because of offsides.
43.00: NO TRY! Solomone Kata and Havili both suck in the defenders before Havili sends Timoci Tavatavanawai away in the corner with a forward pass. 24-12
The halftime score was Fijian Drua 24 Moana Pasifika 12
41.00: PEEEP! We are back underway in Australia.
43.00; Fijian Drua has started well, they are on the front foot early on.
45.00: Another decent attack ends with another 50/50 pass going to the ground.
48.00: Good defending from Moana! They managed to stop a couple of good attacks with solid defending near their line.
51.00: A couple of reset scrums kill the game’s momentum.
53.00: The game is a bit stop-start. Dull, even.
55.00: Moana kick a penalty to the opposition’s 22.
57.00: TRY! Timoci Tavatavanawai beat Kitione Taliga’s unsuccessful attempt to claim the crossfield kick, and the winger gets his try. 24-17
58.00: CONVERSION! Havili adds the extras. 24-19
61.00: MISS! Tela makes a big mistake from almost in front. 24-19
62.00: Drua gives away another penalty, Moana kick outside the opposition’s 22; however, the ball does not go out.
65.00: the mistakes keep coming as the teams cannot hold onto the pill.
67.00: Fijian Drua’s forwards win a scrum penalty in front of the posts.
68.00: PENALTY! Tela, this time, nails his goal. 27-19
70.00: TRY! Vota has a brace from close range. 32-19
71.00: CONVERSION! Tela adds the two. 34-19
74.00: Tevita Ikanivere almost started and finished what might have been World Rugby’s try of the year!
77.00: Moana wins a scrum penalty for collapsing – it’s “throw the kitchen sink time” for the islanders!
81.00: NO TRY! Tima Fainga’anuku is pushed in the back to chalk off Ratave’s score. 34-19
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The final score is Drua 34 (24) Moana 19 (12)
Tries – Cirikidaveta, Habosi, Vota (2)
Pen – Tela (2)
Con – Tela (4)
Tries – Funaki, Pole, Tavatavanawai
Con – McClutchie, Havili
Referee: James Doleman
Assistant Ref 1: Graham Cooper
Assistant Ref 2: Matt Kellahan
TMO: Brett Cronan
Fijian Drua: 15 Kitione Taliga, 14 Onisi Ratave, 13 Apisalome Vota, 12 Kalaveti Ravouvovu, 11 Vinaya Habosi, 10 Teti Tela, 9 Frank Lomani, 8 Te Ahiwaru Cirikidaveta, 7 Mesulame Dolokoto, 6 Meli Derenlagi (captain), 5 Viliame Rarasea, 4 Isoa Nasilasila, 3 Manasa Saulo, 2 Zuriel Togiatama, 1 Haereiti Hetet.
Replacements: 16 Tevita Ikanivere, 17 Kaliopasi Uluilakepa, 18 Samuela Tawake, 19 Chris Minimbi, 20 Nemani Nagusa, 21 Peni Matawalu, 22 Caleb Muntz, 23 Selestino Ravutaumada.
Moana Pasifika: 15 William Havili, 14 Tima Fainga’anuku, 13 Solomone Kata, 12 Danny Toala, 11 Timoci Tavatavanawai, 10 Lincoln McClutchie, 9 Ereatara Enari, 8 Henry Time-Stowers, 7 Solomone Funaki, 6 Sione Tu’ipulotu, 5 Alex McRobbie, 4 Michael Curry, 3 Sekope Kepu (captain), 2 Ray Niuia, 1 Abraham Pole.
Replacements: 16 Samiuela Moli, 17 Ezekiel Lindenmuth, 18 Joe ‘Apikotoa, 19 Veikoso Poloniati, 20 Jack Lam, 21 Jonathan Taumateine, 22 Christian Leali’ifano, 23 Henry Taefu.