American Samoa national rugby union team
|Union||American Samoa Rugby Union|
The Talavalu is the name of a traditional Samoan war weapon, originally carved out of ironwood. As can be seen on the right side of the American Samoa Rugby Union logo, it resembles a club but has eight diamond-shaped teeth carved on one edge. Translated, "tala" is teeth, and "valu" is eight.
National development of rugby union in American Samoa has been overshadowed by the popularity of American football since the 1970s. Unlike neighbouring Samoa, American Samoa has had limited international rugby competition. Most of American Samoa's matches have been played at the South Pacific Games.
American Samoa's first international 15's match was at the 1983 South Pacific Games in Apia, where they lost 55–0 to Western Samoa (as it was then called). They did not make the final stages of that tournament. American Samoa fared much better at the 1991 South Pacific Games in Port Moresby, notching up wins against Solomon Islands and French Polynesia. While they lost 34–7 to Western Samoa in the final, the American Samoans won the rugby 15's silver medal.
The South Pacific Games (now called the Pacific Games) subsequently switched to hosting rugby 7's in preference to rugby 15's, and the ASRU, while still eligible for the FORU Oceania Cup, turned more of its attention toward the seven-a-side form of the game. American Samoa competed at the Pacific Games Rugby 7's in 2011, and the Oceania Rugby 7's in 2011 and 2012.
Expatriate playersDue to limited opportunities at home, many players from American Samoa have traveled overseas to further their rugby careers. American Samoans, or players of American Samoan heritage, who have been selected for other international rugby teams include:
- "Welcome to Amerika Samoa Rugby". American Samoa Rugby Union. Archived from the original on 13 August 2013. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "American Samoa Rugby Union Results". rugbyinternational.net. Archived from the original on 11 November 2013. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Results for the South Pacific Games series". rugbyinternational.net. Archived from the original on 11 November 2013. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- American Samoa on IRB.com