Written by John Davidson
Stephen Crichton admits his team brought shame on Samoa with their huge loss in their World Cup opener, but have turned that all around by making the tournament final.
Much was expected of Samoa, who were spanked 60-6 by England last month in Newcastle, before the World Cup began.
But they bounced back to go on a four-game winning streak, sensationally defeating Tonga and England to reach a World Cup final for the first time in the country’s history.
“It was a shock,” he conceded.
“It hit us differently that we lost by that much and putting that type of shame on Samoa and our people.
“It was just everyone wanting to be better and turning it around for ourselves and for our people as well, and I think we’ve done that.”
Now the small Pacific nation has been surrounded by support from all four corners of the planet.
“It’s gone global,” Crichton said.
“It means a lot to me, to the boys in our squad and to the motherland as well and for the people of Samoa.
“We see all the videos that have come out from that and how proud they all are. It’s been pretty hectic. It’s pretty crazy that it’s gone worldwide.”
Samoa will face defending champions Australia in the final.
Crichton is excited by the prospect and has no issue with being underdogs against the Kangaroos.
“Australia are the top team everyone wants to verse,” the Penrith Panthers centre said.
“They’re a side full of superstars. It’s definitely going to test us but I’ve got full confidence in the boys that we can get the job done.
“Being the underdogs is probably a good thing as well.
“We didn’t want to be in [the World Cup] just to compete, we wanted to be at the top. I think we’ve done it throughout the tournament.”