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The Chiropractor readying Samoa to crack Ireland

Brian Lima was one of the hardest hitters in rugby in his playing days and now runs Samoa’s defence.

Lima leads Samoa training at Blackrock RFC yesterday.
Lima leads Samoa training at Blackrock RFC yesterday.
Image: ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

SAMOA HAVE A well-earned reputation for huge hits in defence and it looks like Ireland will be getting an even bigger dose of them than usual on Saturday.

Head coach Stephen Betham has a new face amongst his coaching staff for this autumn series, with the Samoan legend Brian Lima taking charge of the side’s defence. The 41-year-old is a member of the IRB’s Hall of Fame and was briefly attached to Munster in 2005.

Nicknamed ‘The Chiropractor’ during his playing days due to his apparent ability to rearrange bones with his shuddering tackles, Lima won 64 caps for Samoa in an international career that spanned five World Cups, finishing after the 2007 tournament.

The Apia native’s club career saw him play for the Highlanders and the Blues in Super Rugby before spells with Stade Français, Swansea and Japanese side Secom Rugguts. In March 2005, Munster brought Lima to Ireland on a short-term deal but having torn a quadriceps muscle in the build-up to the Heineken Cup quarter-final against Biarritz, he never managed to make an appearance for the province.

Lima took his explosive talents to Bristol in the Premiership, where his professional club career finished. Since then, The Chiropractor has been working with the Samoan U18s and has now been given the opportunity to advance his coaching career with involvement in the senior international set-up this month.

If he can inspire the Samoan players to recreate the more spectacular moments of his own playing days, then Ireland are going to be very sore on Sunday morning.

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Murray Kinsella

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