Rugby League: Chanel Harris-Tavita scores freakish try in Samoa debut against Papua New Guinea

Warriors halfback Chanel Harris-Tavita has a reputation of coming up with big plays on the big stage, and the teenager managed to do that in his international debut for Toa Samoa.

The playmaker scored arguably one of the freakiest tries of the season to date, helping Samoa claim a 24-6 win over Papua New Guinea at Leichhardt Oval on Saturday.

With Samoa leading 18-6 in the dying stages of the match, Harris-Tavita attempted a field goal to put the result beyond doubt.

But his left-footed strike hit the upright and skewed wide. Fortuitously for Harris-Tavita, the ball bounced perfectly back towards him and with everyone else just standings around, the young Warriors collected the ball to score his team's fourth try of the night.

"He scored off his own field goal attempt - how many times have you said that?" said Fox Sports commentator Warren Smith.

Last year, while playing for the Junior Kiwis, Harris-Tavia set up a stunning try off a scorpion kick.

The try helped Samoa claim their first test win since 2016, with former Kiwis prop Martin Taupau playing an influential role.

Playing his first test for the island nation since 2013, Tapau played 61 minutes and ran for 157 metres along with making 33 tackles.

Coach Matt Parish feels more players will follow Tapau and represent Samoa in the near future.

"I think the momentum might have already started. I think you could find another player or two might come. Marty Taupau's been outstanding all week. He's going to make a very big difference to this team over the next few years … very big.

"It's good now because there are guys wanting to play and the strength of the team are blokes that aren't there.

"Guys like Joey Leilua, Tim Lafai have been the mainstays but they're injured. I'm sure if they were available they'd be there with bells on."

Earlier in the evening, Fiji claimed a commanding 58-14 win over Lebanon.


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