(Rugby.com.au) The #GoldBlooded tour is set for international expansion next week with the Classic Wallabies crossing the Pacific to spread the Rugby spirit in Samoa.
Former Wallaby greats Justin Harrison, Morgan Turinui and Lote Tuqiri will run clinics in local schools to promote the game and further strengthen the relationship between the two nations.
The trip is in partnership with the Australian Government and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and supports Australia’s stepped up engagement in the region through forming friendships and creating opportunities for Samoans within sport.
Australian High Commissioner to Samoa, Her Excellency Sara Moriarty said: “Australia and Samoa share a love and dedication to sport, particularly Rugby, as evidenced by the number of Pacific athletes participating in Australian sporting codes.
“We’re excited to be able to connect with communities in Samoa over shared sporting experiences during the Classic Wallabies visit”.
Classic Wallabies General Manager Justin Harrison said: ‘’This is a fantastic opportunity for the Classic Wallabies to engage with our Pacific Rugby allies and fans.
‘’We’ve seen the impact our visits have on local communities across Australia over the last couple of months and now we get to spread that passion even further in places where Rugby is the beating heart.”
The tour also highlights the strong friendship between the two Rugby nations which began when the Qantas Wallabies first played Manu Samoa in 1991.
Since then the Qantas Wallabies have claimed four out of five wins
however Samoa took the spoils in their most recent encounter winning 32-23 at
ANZ Stadium in an infamous clash in Sydney in 2011.
The next showdown kicks off in less than three weeks when Samoa return to Sydney to take on the Qantas Wallabies at Bankwest Stadium Parramatta on Saturday September 7.
Samoa Rugby Union CEO, Faleomavaega Vincent Fepuleai said: “SRU is grateful for the gesture by Rugby Australia to have the match between Manu Samoa and the Wallabies heading into the Rugby World Cup.”
The Australian Samoan community is expected to rally behind their native land and fill the stands at the new world-class venue, with 75,000 Samoans now calling Australia home and a large proportion of those based in Sydney.
The Test will also be a special occasion for six Qantas Wallabies stars with Samoan heritage including Scott Sio, Allan Ala’alatoa, Matt To’omua, Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, Jordan Petaia and Christian Leali’ifano.
Following the Test match Rugby Australia will continue to work alongside the Australian Government and DFAT to support them with future Rugby initiatives in the Pacific.
Community Rugby Media Advisor
Rugby AustraliaM +61 420 982 239
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