Samoa beat Scotland for the first time as powerful winger Alesana Tuilagi scored two tries in a 27-17 win in the opening game of the four-nation tournament in South Africa on Saturday.
Fullback James So’oialo and Tuilagi crossed in the first 15 minutes at Kings Park to surprise a Scotland team missing its four British Lions, and Tuilagi’s second try in the 64th was decisive after Scotland regained some composure and clawed its way back into contention.
Scrumhalf Greig Laidlaw began Scotland’s fightback with four penalties, and right wing Sean Lamont scored the Scots’ only try at the start of the second half to send them briefly ahead at 17-14.
But Tuilagi ran on to a short pass off a scrum and burst through the defense for Samoa’s clinching try and first victory in nine tests against the Scots. Scotland had won seven of the eight previous meetings, with one draw.
South Africa and Italy are the other two teams contesting the three-week tournament.