Planet Rugby

Samoan outcry over Schwalger axing

22nd May 2012 13:09

Share:

Mahonri Schwalger samoa

Mahonri Schwalger: Centre of a storm

Mahonri Schwalger's demise as Samoa's captain has prompted anger in the Pacific Island nation, with the largest daily newspaper calling him "the people's captain" and describing his ousting as "a comedy of errors and a sad tragedy."

The Samoa Observer said coach Stephan Betham had made a mistake in dropping World Cup captain Schwalger from the squad for next month's Pacific Nations Cup.

Betham had said that Schwalger was replaced because of "the age factor", as 31-year-old Schwalger was unlikely to be in Samoa's 2015 World Cup team so it was time to introduce younger talent.

Schwalger has been a standout player for the Chiefs in Super Rugby this season and he had said his axing was not because of his age but because he had criticised Samoa Rugby Union officials after last year's World Cup.

He had said the social activities of officials at the World Cup had disrupted the team's preparation for key matches and claimed team clothing and equipment had been sold for personal profit.

"I knew it would cost me my international career" but "if it means that the (Samoa) will go forward without me then that's a sacrifice I will take," said Schwalger.

The newspaper added that Betham had offered only "veiled excuses" for omitting a player "playing the best rugby of his life."

"Perhaps someone should remind the folks at SRU that the people of this country are not stupid and that they should stop pulling these PR disasters," said the Samoa Observer .

"It's an embarrassment for this country.

"The Manu Samoa (team), after all, is not owned by the folks running the Samoa Rugby Union. This is a team that's owned by the people of this country - the very people who gave their lunch money so that the team could attend the Rugby World Cup last year.

"Today it's fair to say there is hardly a soul out there that's not hurt and deeply offended by the decision."

The newspaper said other World Cup players dropped from the squad -Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu, Seilala Mapusua, George Stowers and Alesana Tuilagi - had all supported Schwalger.

"Somebody within the SRU should explain," the newspaper said. "While we wait, the SRU should also take a leaf from Schwalger's book in terms of class, dignity and poise."

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs WaspsLeicester Tigers vs Wasps Preview
Exeter vs SaracensExeter vs Saracens Preview
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs GloucesterLondon Irish vs Gloucester Preview
London Welsh vs NorthamptonLondon Welsh vs Northampton Preview
Newcastle Falcons vs Sale SharksNewcastle Falcons vs Sale Sharks Preview
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South AfricaWales vs South Africa Preview
England vs AustraliaEngland vs Australia Preview
More International Match fixtures
European Rugby Champions Cup
Friday , December 5
Montpellier vs Bath19:45
More European Rugby Champions Cup fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs EdinburghZebre vs Edinburgh Preview
Leinster vs OspreysLeinster vs Ospreys Preview
Connacht vs ScarletsConnacht vs Scarlets Preview
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow Warriors vs DragonsGlasgow Warriors vs Dragons Preview
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Thursday , December 4
La Rochelle vs Exeter19:45
Friday , December 5
Brive vs Oyonnax18:30
Grenoble vs Rovigo18:30
Newcastle vs Stade Francais20:00
More European Rugby Challenge Cup fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Toulon vs Clermont AuvergneToulon vs Clermont Auvergne Preview
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:30
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:30
Lyon vs Montpellier18:30
Toulouse vs Grenoble20:45
Sunday , November 30
Stade Francais vs Brive18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath 25 - 6 HarlequinsBath vs Harlequins Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Cardiff Blues 36 - 25 TrevisoCardiff Blues vs Treviso Report
Munster 21 - 20 UlsterMunster vs Ulster Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Georgia 35 - 24 JapanGeorgia vs Japan Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Treviso 24 - 24 LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Report
Edinburgh 28 - 13 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath933
2Northampton830
3Exeter828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821