For such a small island nation, Samoa (Western Samoa as they were called in the 1991 and 1995 tournaments) has really punched above its weight in World Cups past.
After not taking part in the 1987 World Cup, the Samoans made their name in 1991, when they shocked Wales in Cardiff, winning an ultra-physical game 16-13. They then ran eventual winners Australia very close, losing 9-3. A big win against Argentina followed, which saw them qualify against the odds for the quarter-finals. That's where their tournament ended, as they went down 28-6 to Scotland in Edinburgh.
Western Samoa matched that feat in 1995, after pool wins against Argentina and Italy, but again they couldn't crack the semi-finals, losing 42-14 to Francois Pienaar's South Africa.
In 1999 Samoa recalled memories of the aforementioned famous win in Cardiff, beating Wales on their way to a respectable quarter-final playoff exit, at the hands once more of Scotland.
Samoa have failed to escape their pool at the last couple of World Cups, but they have shown decent form this year, even beating Australia, and of course they have been drawn in Pool D with - who else - Wales. That match may well decide which team progresses to the knockout stages.
World Cup squad:
Forwards: Ole Avei, Maurie Faasavalu, Census Johnston, Filipo Lavea Levi, Daniel Leo, Logovi'i Mulipola, Ti'i Paulo, Anthony Perenise, Manaia Salavea, Mahonri Schwalger, George Stowers, Sakaria Taulafo, Joe Tekori, Kane Thompson, Ofisa Treviranus, Taiasina Tuifua
Backs: Kahn Fotuali'i, David Lemi, Johhny Leota, Seilala Mapusua, Eliota Sapolu Fuimaono, Tasesa Lavea, Augustino Poluleuligaga, George Pisi, Tusi Pisi, James So’oialo, Jeremy Sua, Sailosi Tagicakibau, Alesana Tuilagi, Paul Williams
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