OFC Nations Cup champions Tahiti await Samoa after the latter advanced to the second round of Oceania’s World Cup qualifying on Friday.
Samoa defeated Tonga 3-0 thanks to a brace from John Hall to claim top spot in the four-team group that has been in action in Tonga this week.
Hall scored in the 22nd and 77th minutes to add to Andrew Mobberley’s opener, as Samoa moved to six points just ahead of Cook Islands and American Samoa on goal difference.
American Samoa defeated Cook Islands 2-0 in the other match to assure Samoa of a spot in the 2016 OFC Nations Cup, which will double as the second round of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) qualifying campaign for Russia 2018.
Samoa will play Tahiti, New Caledonia and Papua New Guinea in Group A of next year’s tournament, with the top two teams in each group qualifying for the third round of World Cup qualifying, as well as the OFC Nations Cup semi-finals.
New Zealand, Solomon Islands, Fiji and Vanuatu make up Group B.
Tahiti won Oceania’s 2012 continental championships with a 1-0 victory of New Caledonia in the final.