For the second day in a row we have just the one match to look forward to on day five, Russia taking on Samoa. But for this Russian side involved, it will be their second game of the tournament with only 3 days rest since their opener. A tough ask for any team.
Russia vs Samoa – Pool A
The thing most remarkable about the side named for Russia is that it is unchanged from the one that took part in the opening night against Japan. We learnt a lot that night as they pushed Japan much more than expected. Scrumhalf Vasily Dorofeev is a massive key for Russia, his box kicking is pinpoint and he directs his pack well. They lost a lot when he was subbed against Japan. Another couple to watch are hooker Stanislav Selskii who was a dynamo around the field and left winger Yury Golosnitskiy who showed he knows exactly where the try line is and was fantastic if given any space. Samoa must be on their toes.
After what seems like a glowing view of the Russians, there’s even more quality about this Samoan team. A dynamic pack which held strong against the Wallabies a few weeks ago, led by Michael Alaalatoa, Kane Leaupepe and TJ Ioane, it will have more work on its plate come Tuesday but will miss Jack Lam in that back row. You can expect it will be a different show in the backline however. Tusi Pisi is a master in controlling a backline and with talent like Alapati Leiua, Ah See Tuala and impressive Ed Fidow at his disposal, I expect that to be too much for Russia to handle.
RESULT = Samoa by 18
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