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Samoa could be renamed Warrington Samoa after Rugby League World Cup
12:40pm Thursday 10th May 2012 in News
SAMOA could be renamed Warrington Samoa should next year’s Rugby League World Cup be a success.
A delegation from the Pacific island has been in Warrington for the past week to help prepare for the 2013 competition.
And after watching Warrington’s game at The Halliwell Jones Stadium on Sunday, Samoa’s rugby league president Tagaloa Faafouina said the country could be renamed.
He said: “This has been so great that we could rename it Warrington Samoa.”
As well as the match on Sunday, the visit also included stops at Warrington Market and a visit to Craven Park in Hull where they will also play in the autumn tournament.
Steven Broomhead, chairman of the Wolves, said: “They really enjoyed the experience here in Warrington and the people of the town gave them a very warm welcome.”
Fritz Tuiavii-Savaiinaea, RLS secretary general, said the tournament will be vital to the country – especially after Samoa struggled in last year’s rugby union World Cup.
He added: “Rugby is very important in Samoa.
“It plays a really important role in education as well as in sport. And after the World Cup last year we are really determined to get to the last four this time.”
Samoa will train at the Padgate Campus of the University of Chester for the event while a hotel has yet to be selected for where they will stay.
Their first game will be against New Zealand at The Halliwell Jones Stadium and Mr Tuiavii-Savaiinaea says the fans can expect some fireworks.
“There will be some really big hits in that game.
“Samoa versus Tonga was the best game in the last World Cup and we expect it to be the same this time.
“For a lot of our players, this is a chance to show what they are worth and get a contract in England, Australia or New Zealand,” he added.
If the country is renamed it would be the latest unusual move. Roads were switched from right hand to left hand drive two years ago and the country lost a day in 2011 to allow for a change in time zones.