BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Tonga held on in Bucharest to beat Romania 21-16 for the first time in the last Rugby World Cup warm-up match for the teams on Saturday.
Tonga received an early penalty try after Romania lock Valentin Poparlan was sin-binned, and went into the break 10-6 ahead after two successful kicks each by Tonga flyhalf Kurt Morath and Romania inside center Florin Vlaicu.
Another Vlaicu kick narrowed the gap to one, but Tonga scored a second try through scrumhalf Sonatane Takulua, and Morath’s third penalty made it 21-9 before Romania finished with a converted try to replacement hooker Andrei Radoi.
Tonga plays Georgia in its first World Cup match in two weeks at Gloucester, while Romania kicks off against France on Sept. 23 at the Olympic Stadium.
Tonga 21 (Sonatane Takulua try, penalty try; Kurt Morath conversion, 3 penalties), Romania 16 (Andrei Radoi try; Florin Vlaicu conversion, 3 penalties). HT: 10-6.