Solomon Islands romped home to victory in their opening match at the XIII South Pacific Games – Samoa 2007 smacking twelve goals past the hapless American Samoa at J.S. Blatter Playing Field in
Commins Menapi (pictured below) was chief destroyer with 4 goals in what he described as “a good afternoon out”. Benjamin Totori and Stanley Waita joined in on the goal-scoring
frenzy with two goals each against an American Samoa team caught in the headlights of an oncoming football juggernaut.
American Samoa coach David Brand was disappointed “that the result got to double figures” but insisted that scoring a goal through a penalty from Ramin Ott was a platform from which to build future
“Naturally we’re disappointed to lose but at least it wasn’t 31-0,” Brand said,” we’ve scored a goal which is a positive and I’m sure we will build from there.”
Solomon Islands coach Airton Andrioli (pictured above) said the result didn’t matter but looked to the players to build confidence ahead of their next match against Tonga on Monday.
“I dislike these types of games because people always ask ‘How many goals will you score’ and there is a tendancy for the players to lose focus because the opposition is not so good,” Andrioli
When asked if he thought he possessed a team capable of repeating the performance of Allan Gillet’s side of 2004, Andrioli was typically honest.
“I think so, yes. In the Solomon Islands people are very passionate about football and their expectations are high. They want us to win the gold medal, they expect it, so if I said I expected
anything any different I would be lying to you,” Andrioli said.
Men Group B
Match day 1 – 25 August 2007 – 15:00
Stade Joseph Sepp BLATTER – Apia – Samoa
SOLOMON ISLANDS 12 (Benjamin TOTORI 12’, 15’, Commins MENAPI 20’ pen, 41’, 75’, 82’, Henry FA’ARODO 43’, Stanley WAITA 58’, 85’, Godwin BEUBEU 69’, Judd
MOLEA 77’, Samson TAKAYAMA 92’+.)
AMERICAN SAMOA 1 (Ramin OTT 55’ pen)
SOLOMON ISLANDS: 1. Fred HALE; 2. David TARO; 3.Samson TAKAYAMA; 5. George SURI; 7. Alick MAEMAE (16. Stanley
WAITA); 10. Judd MOLEA; 11. Commins MENAPI; 13. George LUI; 14. Benjamin TOTORI (9. Godwin BEUBEU); 17. Gideon OMOKIRIO; 18. Henry FA’ARODO (12. James NAKA).
Pesamino VICTOR; 5. Alexander VICTOR (7. Thomas LEOTA); 8. Natia NATIA; 11. Maika MOLESI; 12. Hansel MAIAVA; 14. Tafuna TOILOLO; 15. Uasilaa HELETA; 19. Ramin
OTT(20. Sue TONISE).