It’s do or die for the Samoans on Friday night as they take on Australia in the quarter finals of the Rugby League World Cup in Darwin.
Newcastle-bound prop Herman Ese’ese, who again gets the start in the number 10 jersey for Samoa, said they’ve got nothing to lose against a powerhouse Kangaroos outfit.
“We can’t let Australia get to our heads so we’re just going to worry about ourselves,” Ese’ese explained.
“We just need to keep working on the little things as a team and hopefully we play well.”
While Samoa may have struggled to record a win, with only a draw and two losses in the group stage, the 23-year-old admits they’ve still got a positive outlook heading into the quarter final.
“I think a lot of people expected more from us at the tournament but the boys have been really tight throughout the World Cup campaign,” Ese’ese commented.
“Despite the results, we have been sticking together as a tight group and we’re just going to keep working hard and going out there and giving it our best.”
With an oppressive 33 degrees forecast in the top end for Friday, both sides will be battling the heat at Darwin Stadium.
“It's very hot here but saying that, we had a week in Samoa and that was just as hot... so that’s what we’re expecting,” he said.
Being their first rugby league match played in the Northern Territory, Ese’ese maintains it’s been great to see the buzz around town.
“The first couple of days we got here, we did a signing session and there was a good turnout,” explained Ese’ese.
“The people in Darwin are really passionate about their rugby league so hopefully we can play a good game for the locals.”
Australia v Samoa Quarter Finals
Date: Friday, November 17
Venue: Darwin Stadium
Kick-off: 7pm local, 8:30pm AEDT