28 Feb 2011

Tahiti win Oceania Beach Soccer Championship

11:20 am on 28 February 2011

Tahiti caused a major boilover on Sunday, upsetting defending champions Solomon Islands 4-3 to win the Oceania Beach Soccer Championship in Papeete.

It's Tahiti's first Beach Soccer crown and came after they had been thrashed 4-1 by the Bilikiki the day before.

It ends the Solomons' run of representing Oceania in the past four FIFA events, with the Tiki Toa qualifying for the Beach Soccer World Cup in Italy in September.

Priscilla Duncan from Oceania Football says the home side got better as the tournament went on.

"From the start of the tournament when they beat Fiji in that thriller as well - it was 6-5 - they've improved a lot since the last year, so I think everyone was surprised. It was a dead rubber during their group match against Solomon Islands and I think it was to the detriment of Solomons"

- I think that they won that game quite easily and perhaps in the final just came out a little bit too relaxed and I think all you can say is that Tahiti played out of their skins.

As well as qualifying for this year's World Cup Tahiti can look forward to a long run on the international stage having already qualified for the 2013 tournament as hosts.