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SOUTH PACIFIC GAMES – THE BIG KICKOFF!

The XIII South Pacific Games – Samoa 2007 kicks off at J.S.Blatter Playing Field in Apia, Samoa today with two women’s fixtures opening the event.  

Match One will see red-hot medal favourite Papua New Guinea take on fresh-faced American Samoa – the first time American Samoa has fielded a women’s team on the international stage.
Papua New Guinea – coached by Francis Moiyap – are heavily favoured to win the gold medal and seal an Olympic Games qualifying play-off against New Zealand with rangy striker
Deslyn Siniu and tricky left winger Daisy Winas likely to provide American Samoa with a difficult afternoon.
 

Fiji begins their tournament against Cook Islands with Fiji coach Forouk Janeman playing down his team’s chances of a medal.  Star players Radilaite Marama and
veteran Asena Ratu will be asked to run the show in a match many believe Fiji should win.
  

In the Men’s competition the feature match will see a Francophone derby match between New Caledonia and Tahiti. The two French-speaking rivals will feature exceptional talent with New
Caledonia’s Pierre Wajoka coming up against Tahiti’s Samuel Garcia – the former Bordeaux player. Missing from Tahiti’s line-up is talismanic playmaker Naea Bennett, a big loss to the team from
French-Polynesia.
 

Solomon Islands campaign gets underway against Oceania minnows American Samoa. Coach Airton Andrioli is quietly confident his team have hit their straps at the right time after a
1-1 draw with Hyundai A-League side Queensland Roar last week.

American Samoa coach David Brand has problems after his number one choice goalkeeper missed a flight from Hawaii forcing Brand to opt for an inexperienced 17-year-old as a
replacement.
 

Host nation Samoa will be looking to impress the home fans when they take on Alwyn Job’s Vanuatu team. Samoa skipper Chris Cahill – brother of Australian international Tim Cahill – will be
hoping the home team can cause something of an upset in this tournament opener. Vanuatu football is on a high after Tafea FC qualified for the O-League and the national U-12 team won the OFC U-12
Festival of Football and played at the Danone Cup in France recently. Victor Maleb will be seen as Vanuatu’s main goal scoring threat.
 

Non-FIFA members Tuvalu will be looking to avoid a hiding on their return to the international stage with coach Toakai Puapua is happy to be at the South Pacific Games but may change his mind
if Carlos Buzzetti’s team continue their fine form with Roy Krishna and Osea Vakatalesau likely to show no mercy for the
Tuvaluans.
      

 

SATURDAY 25 AUGUST, 2007

WOMEN’S FOOTBALL

1230hrs (GMT-13) Papua New Guinea vs. American Samoa

1230hrs (GMT-13) Fiji vs. Cook Islands  

Pool A

Papua New Guinea

American Samoa

Fiji

Cook Islands

Solomon Islands 

Pool B

Tonga

New Caledonia

Tahiti

Samoa 

 

SATURDAY 25 AUGUST, 2007

MEN’S FOOTBALL

1500hrs (GMT-13) Solomon Islands vs. American Samoa

1500hrs (GMT-13) Tahiti vs. New Caledonia

1800hrs (GMT-13) Fiji vs. Tuvalu

2030hrs (GMT-13) Vanuatu vs. Samoa 

Pool A

Fiji

Tahiti

New Caledonia

Cook Islands

Tuvalu 

Pool B

American Samoa

Samoa

Tonga

Solomon Islands

Vanuatu 

 

For further information please contact:  

Gordon Glen Watson                                                 

Media
Officer                        
                     

Oceania Football Confederation

phone:  +685 26504

fax:      +685 38153

mobile:  +685 758
8164                                    

email:    [email protected]   

 

Olivier
Huc                                                                 

Media
Officer                                                            

Oceania Football Confederation

< span>phone:  +685 26504

fax:       +685 38153

mobile:  +685 758
8165                               

email:     [email protected] 

 

Extra Info 

MEN’S FOOTBALL 

The 2008 OFC Nations Cup and FIFA World Cup – South Africa 2010 qualifying pathway begins at the XIII South Pacific Games Men’s Football Tournament – Samoa
2007.
 

The top three teams from two groups qualify for Stage Two in a round robin home and away tournament with New Zealand. 

The winner of Stage Two wins the 2008 OFC Nations Cup, qualifies for the FIFA Confederations Cup – South Africa 2009 and will also progress to Stage Three. 

Stage Three will see Oceania’s representative play a home and away playoff against the 5th placed team in Asian Football Confederation (AFC) for a berth at the FIFA World Cup –
South Africa 2010.
 

WOMEN’S FOOTBALL 

The winner of the XIII South Pacific Games – Samoa 2007 Women’s Football Tournament will progress to a two-match playoff against New Zealand for Oceania’s qualifying berth at the Olympic
Games – Beijing 2008.

  

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