Samoan rugby fans rallied in Auckland and Wellington to support the boys in blue. At a South Auckland venue, families arrived as early as 6am to claim their spot.
This afternoon was a moment of a lifetime for Manu Samoa fans. Among these die-hard fans was former Manu Samoa player, Tautai Tofaeono.
Tofaeono said, “Back in the days, it was unprofessional. There was no money involved but we played for the pride.”
The event at the Ōtāhuhu Rugby Clubhouse kicked off with a traditional prayer and a kava ceremony, and a massive spread catered for by the club.
Some of the spectators were also All Black supporters. Letele Tiseli says, “The reason why we are here is to support Samoa but since I’m living in NZ, I have to support the All Blacks. Go the All Blacks!”
The buzz was electrifying on the streets in South Auckland. Even in the Capital, fans gathered at a central city bar to watch.
True to form, the supporters there weren't shy to show who they were backing.
The main message from supporters at the end of the day is that both countries are winners.