Stade Francais win in clash with Pau

New Zealand hold onto Bledisloe Cup

Toulon play the France '98 FIFA WC squad

Brilliant Richie McCaw lineout move try

Alesana Tuilagi crunches big winger!

Inside the Pride, in Africa, Part 3

Recap from Highlanders' historic win

Horrell hit hard by Malakai Fekitoa

Richie McCaw reveals breakdown secrets

Friday, December 03, 2010

Manu Tuilagi's smashing tackle on Tom Williams

Manu Tuilagi's smashing tackle on Tom Williams

The most well known Tuilagi brothers, Henry and Alesana, have become synonymous with their big runs and crunching hits, but theres another brother who is slowly creeping onto the radar as a potential star of the world game.

His name is Manu, hes still only 19, and he plays for Leicester Tigers. He also happens to be eligible to play for England and already has those in the know stating that its just a matter of time before he does.

He first came to prominence a year ago when Leicester Tigers played the South African midweek side as he, along with Ben Youngs, put in eye catching performances. A year on, and Youngs is the first choice scrumhalf for England. Tuilagi's star might follow a similar path.

Manu, having opted out of going the flash route by growing his hair like his brothers, brings all the physicality, skill, and sheer doggedness required in the modern game. Shorter in stature than most centers, he makes up for it with his power.

Whether its carrying the ball up or smashing his opponent, this Tuilagi brother looks certain to have a successful international career, albeit for a different country. He has risen through the age ranks with England after having lived there for most of his teenage years.

Under 16s, under 18s, under 20s, and now with Leicester, he has stated that England is the country hed like to play for. The only question now is whether theres any chance of him being fast tracked into the senior side and possibly turning out at the World Cup next year.

Tigers coach Richard Cockerill feels he should be. "If Manu has a good season for us, there is no reason why he cant go to the World Cup. Hes that good. If England get an opportunity I think they would like to see what he can do, Cockerill said recently.

Hes definitely one to watch over the next year or so, and with hits like this one against Harlequins two weeks ago, ball carriers should also be well aware of his approaching presence.

Time: 0:42

Posted by Rugbydump at 6:35 pm | View Comments (68)

Posted in Big Hits & Dirty Play

Viewing 68 comments

Anonymous December 03, 2010 6:32 pm

Classs hit, like the musical touch too, like a steaaaaammmm train, ouch.

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Luxi December 03, 2010 6:37 pm

crunching tackle, although he coulda been penalised by some refs for high tackle, plus he doesnt really release the tackled player, so again, coulda been a penalty

i think it's be a shame for him not to play for samoa, the country of his family and many brothers, just shows you that he probs left samoa too early (he was U16)...

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Ben December 03, 2010 6:37 pm

Good timing

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 6:49 pm

i wouldnt say he is shorter than most centres, he is 6 foot or 6.1 and over 17 stone. ok smaller alex and henry but bigger than freddy and andy his 2 most capped brothers.

anybody know what happened to his other brother vivea? formally of tigers academy

all played for leicester and brought over by freddy the eldest brother who is a tigers legend.

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Clinomaniac December 03, 2010 6:58 pm

I dig my toes into the sand.
The ocean looks like a thousand diamonds strewn across a blue blanket. I lean against the wind, pretend that I am weightless,
and in this moment I am happy...

Sorry couldn't help it.

Good new talent, good song, good times.

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 6:58 pm

The Tuilagi's aren't a family of rugby playing brothers, but a family of absolute monsters!!!

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 7:44 pm

A bit meh IMO. Good timing, but that's the only reason why it's a big hit - I've done the same and I'm only a little winger. A real big hit is one you put on someone who is on a charge (I don't even attempt that! Let them run by me first)

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 7:59 pm

and some english people have a go at NZ for 'stealing' Islanders...

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Maverick December 03, 2010 8:16 pm

Manuuuuuuu! :D

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 8:20 pm

A real big hit is one you put on someone who is on a charge


Tell that to Hougaard! (Facing Brian Lima)

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jojoba December 03, 2010 8:30 pm

cred 2 the tackled, after all he was trying to play the ball

no damn UFC here, thanks

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ralph malph December 03, 2010 8:44 pm

A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.

I'm not trying to be cynical, but not having seen the match - was Tuilagi penalized for not releasing/rolling away after the tackle? Surely, he could've been...

Good hit, in any case. Glad it wasn't penalized in and of itself.

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Poachie December 03, 2010 9:06 pm

English poaching islanders...who'da thunk it!

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AB2011 December 03, 2010 9:12 pm

I remember a while back someone from the uk saying OZ and NZ 'steal and pillage islanders from their home land' lol.

Fact is that this guy has a choice and it's up to him who he wants to play for much like islanders from NZ and OZ.

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 9:16 pm

Wikipedia: In June 2010, Tuilagi faced deportation from the United Kingdom after it emerged that he had entered the country on a holiday visa six years earlier and had stayed on illegally. After an appeal, he was later granted indefinite leave to remain.

Rugby certainly opens alot of doors.

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 9:22 pm

One of my favourite players already. He was smashing the Boks all over the field last year when he played against them for Leicester. He ran over the midfield so many times in that match. He was only 18 at that time as well.

Can't wait to see more of him.

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 9:27 pm

He would be a great option to have at 12 or 13.

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Coops December 03, 2010 9:28 pm

With his appeal, he had a petition signed by over 5000 fans and support from MPs...what he brings to rugby, the premiership and the economy itself (i.e. he'll draw in crowds, and pay high taxes as a high earner) is much more than some of the other people who are allowed to stay in England. However, I digress...

I think home is where the heart can be born somewhere but still not consider it your home. He lived in the UK intermittently between 10-16 when Freddy and Henry were involved, before moving permanently. He has been quoted as saying he feels England is his country - all his friends are here, his girlfriend and most of his family. As long as he's proud to be English, that's all I need.

Awesome hit though, a perfectly timed tackle is just as good as front on smash. His run later in the game was impressive...handed off 4 players.

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 9:34 pm

I witnessed this first hand, you could hear the collision about 20 meters away!

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Arg December 03, 2010 9:55 pm

The way Williams' head goes back is orgasmic

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 10:11 pm

19 years old?!?!?

F*** me, I'll have what he's eating...

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Anonymous December 03, 2010 11:01 pm

No blood capsules this time?

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 12:02 am

heres a thought, how about england play actual english players instead of stealing other countries players.......

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 12:12 am

What's the name of the song??????????

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realityCheck December 04, 2010 1:00 am

"As long as he's proud to be English, that's all I need."

Who do you think Manu was supporting when England played Samoa recently?

Oh wait...

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Isaac December 04, 2010 1:25 am

I hope he plays for samoa. They need to have their best players if they really want to compete. If he does end up playing for samoa, they'll have the scariest team in world rugby!!!

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 1:58 am

Looks like an ape.

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 2:39 am

All rugby players look like apes.

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martin riggs December 04, 2010 3:21 am

'cept for Gavin Henson. He looks like an ape done up in pretty makeup.

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Juggernauter December 04, 2010 4:19 am

What, no blood capsules this time, Tom? Oh wait.. that's Manu Tuilagi coming at you. Guess you won't need one...

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rooney December 04, 2010 6:03 am

why the harlequins no.11 jump when he caught the ball. absolutely no need i think. poor technique.

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Ben December 04, 2010 10:10 am

As long has he came up through the english rugby system like the NZ and Aus islanders I think its ok.

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GTI December 04, 2010 10:43 am

unbelievable great camera angel for the first time the hit is shown!!!

a little sad he wants to play for england...i can absolutley understand him especially its the country he grewp up in but the Tuilagis have such a nice Samoa-tradition

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 10:50 am

Could you imagine engand's centres being Hape, Flutey, Tuilagi or Barritt, despite having more rugby players than any other nation. Its a bit sad IMO.

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 12:17 pm


The song is "wish you were here" by Incubus.

Great hit.

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Coops December 04, 2010 12:57 pm


As I was with the guy at Twickenham, I can tell you that he was supporting England.

He supported his brother, and applauded when Samoa scored, but was cheering for England all the way through.

Good job you know what you're talking about...oh wait

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 1:07 pm

Hape and Tuilagi wouldnt be a bad centre combo, but if they were to come up agaisnt SBW and smith then i dont think they'd stand much chance. Surely for a country with a huge population of rugby players, england should be able to provide players such as SBW and Smith.

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 2:18 pm

Well Hape's 28 whereas Tuilagi is 19. He already has the physicality of the top players. I'm sure over the next 5 years or so he could learn a huge amount and become a top player. Hopefully, a young quality centre will pop up to pair with him to make a good 12 / 13 team.

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 2:20 pm

"Could you imagine engand's centres being Hape, Flutey, Tuilagi or Barritt, despite having more rugby players than any other nation. Its a bit sad IMO."

They probably have more players because of many doing what Tuilagi and Hape did. Besides, you could say something similar about AUS and NZ...

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Matt December 04, 2010 2:47 pm

c'mon, lets be honest here. The guy with the ball was up in the air and whats-his-face bumbles into him. I've seen much better and so have you.

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 3:52 pm

This hit was all about timing - Williams had gone up for the ball and wasn't able to avoid the hit (if he saw it coming - which I doubt). Tuilagi does release Williams and then is on his feet and competing for the ball but he does it very quickly. Nothing wrong that I can see.

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Corbin December 04, 2010 5:11 pm

Just imagine the Tuilagi family all gathered around the dinner table, 5 huge lumber hulks, and one cross dresser.. What a sight indeed...

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Anonymous December 04, 2010 5:14 pm

England could do with some Pacific Island flair!

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Rodney December 04, 2010 6:50 pm

Matt/Captain Buzzkill, it was still a good hit!

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Anonymous December 05, 2010 12:09 am

anyone know the song ?

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Carlos December 05, 2010 12:12 am

The guy lives in England and plays for them since a kid. I think it's pretty logical he wants to play for them as a senior. For him it's his country. Apart from his brothers, probably he has no connection to samoa. He was formed in England, it's the country responsible for him being what he his. What's the matter? It's not like flutey or hapey that grew in NZ and became men living there. And i'm not english.

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Anonymous December 05, 2010 12:15 am

Looks like Manu's brother Anitelea and Pom Carl Fearns got into a bit of a tickle with TEN bouncers at a nightclub, and came off the better with FOUR of them before finally being restrained.

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Anonymous December 05, 2010 3:18 am

carlos and coop needs to get a room and have gay two brainless fuks i tell yall... heres a quote for yall "you can take the boy fr the island but you cant take the island from the boy"

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coops December 05, 2010 11:07 am

Well done anonymous for that brilliant comment. That really hurt me and I sure as hell will think twice next time before putting my views across...after all, we don't want you imagining too much gay sex now do we?

Seriously, grow up!

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Anonymous December 05, 2010 3:36 pm

I remember reading articles from the late 90s talking about South African racism towards visiting islanders.. then the islanders turning around a beating up these bar patrons and bouncers...

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Anonymous December 05, 2010 3:37 pm


manu was in england for only six years.. that isn't even nearly as long as 14 years growing up in samoa

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Anonymous December 05, 2010 4:03 pm

great to see clips of tackles back in rugbydump, lots of highlights and no hits lately

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Rowan DeBues December 05, 2010 5:22 pm

About England stealing players thing.

The kid moved here when was 10 (or near abouts). He played for England U16, England U18, England U20. His whole family is there for the most part. He has a girlfriend in England. He has said HE wants to play for England not Samoa. Martin Johnson didn't say that, Manu did.

How much more do you guys need? Does he need to get a blood transfusion from the Queen to be English enough?

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Bobby brown December 06, 2010 4:21 am

Haha after all the english complaining over the years about nz and australia having pacific islanders now all of a sudden its ok if they grab a few. The entire english backline will be polynesian in a few years.

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Richard December 06, 2010 12:45 pm

What i liked is as soon as he hit him, he's on his feet, ripping the ball.

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Anonymous December 06, 2010 8:49 pm

Are the rules for being allowed to play made up by each nation's branch or are they made up by the IRB? Because everyone seems to have their own rules. I know here in Ireland it was a bit off an oddity originally when Boss was selected (we're all used to it now). I've heard of players moving from Tonga, Fiji, Samoa, etc. to New Zealand and Australia, but they seemed to do so at quite a young age (from what I have heard and read) and have grown up there. But England seem to be able to take players from anywhere.

I mean Hape switched countries at around 26 years old... and Flutey played for the Maori in 2005... why can they just switch?

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FrankyH December 06, 2010 10:08 pm

^ they will have lived in England for a certain number of years, I think it's three. They basically need residency. The same will have been for Isaac Boss, Vainikolo, etc.

Not a big deal but not ideal. It would be great to have 'pure' sides all over the world.

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Anonymous December 06, 2010 10:52 pm

Isaac Boss' grandmother is Irish. He didn't just live here for a few years.

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Jono December 07, 2010 3:43 am

Great tackle.
Blatant penalty though for not releasing the tackled player.
Blatantly illegal playing the ball.

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Jono December 07, 2010 3:46 am

The thing about Islanders palying for Aus and Nz, is that many of them were born in Nz and Aus.
In fact roughly half the current Samoan team were in fact born in Nz, not Samoa. It's a very different situation to this player being picked by the English. This is blatant poaching (not that every country doesn't do it - seems like no one in the UK minds though, as long as it's not an islander - Both Ireland and Scotland currently have Australians playing for them).

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FrankyH December 07, 2010 7:21 am

Anonymous, you're right, there is that occurrence too. Fair enough though as it would be the same as getting into a country to live, and he hadn't played for NZ before.

Jono, I completely disagree. How is it poaching?? Manu chose to live in England when his brothers went over to play there. He lived there for his teenage years and prefers it to where he comes from, so why not? I'm tempted to say that if he were white (from another country) people wouldn't care as much.

Just look at Daniel Vickerman, Clyde Rathbone, Mat Turner (Eng sevens), Hendrick Fourie, etc. The list is massive.

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Anonymous December 07, 2010 5:35 pm

Tom Court's grandfather is Irish.

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Jono December 07, 2010 10:05 pm

Hey, don't get me worng, I'm completely fine with it, I'm just pointing out that this sort of thing could much more easily be defined as poaching than what NZ does.
And yes the list is massive. The Euro teams naturalise players as much as anyone, which ios why it annoys me when they accuse NZ of poaching Islanders, when in fact the Island countries are full of NZ born players.

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Anonymous January 27, 2011 7:10 pm

@ Ralph Malph (the cynic)
High Tackle? what a joke, perfectly legal, and as for not really letting go of the player, watch the slowmo again, tackle made, no ruck, Manu gets to his feet to try to rip the ball, if anything Williams is holding on illegally!

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Anonymous January 27, 2011 7:12 pm

@ Ralph Malph

My apologies, a previous post was aimed at LUXI, Not You!

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Anonymous May 29, 2011 6:12 pm

The only reason Samoan's play for other nations but Samoa, is because of the $$$$... If the IRU would actually look after the island nations, I'm afraid that none of the western nations would stand a chance!
If your not an Islander, then you wouldn't know! The pride we have for our little island is intense. And reality is, these players have to provide for there families! So please don't put your own spin on these players "wanting" to play for England or Australia, or NZ... Cause I would put my house on it that if Samoa had the same finacal backing and opportunity's as NZ, Eng, and Aus... They would chose the islands any day brother, coz I know I would, and I was born in Australia! Don't get me wrong, I'm proud to be an aussie slash samoan, but there is something inside all island kids that would love to play for there homeland! Coz it's all we carry on about when this particular subject comes up!!! Cheee hooo

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