Internationals Mate Ma'a Tonga

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mt.wellington

mt.wellington

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League: Jason Taumalolo confirms international allegiance remains with Tonga
13 Jun, 2018 8:08pm

Jason Taumalolo has committed his international playing future to Tonga. Photo / Getty Images

Jason Taumalolo will not be playing for the Kiwis again any time soon.

The 25-year-old forward has confirmed his international playing career will remain with Tonga on a long-term basis.

A dominant force up front for the North Queensland Cowboys, Taumalolo led Tonga into the semifinals of last year's Rugby League World Cup after a late defection from the Kiwis.

As reported by the Herald on Sunday, all of late Kiwis defectors from 2017 as expected to join Taumalolo in remaining with Tonga.

Warriors wing David Fusitua has already opted for the red jersey again and Kiwis coach Michael Maguire expects the other high-profile former Kiwis - Manu Ma'u, Sio Siua Taukeiaho and Solomone Kata - to do the same.

"As far as I know, they're all going to be aligned with Tonga," Maguire told the Herald on Sunday. "They haven't made any approach there. I've spoken to various people in the background about what they want to do and I understand those guys are going to be sticking with Tonga."

Speaking to cowboys.com.au, Taumalolo said he was hoping to help the nation continue their rise on the representative level.

"Myself along with a number of other players, have recommitted to Tonga again because we are passionate about our heritage and we also want to help make international rugby league stronger and the best way for us to do that is by making Tonga a competitive team internationally," he said.

"I hope the governing bodies of the game also follow suit by making sure Tonga and other tier two nations have the opportunity to play regular meaningful games against tier one nations."


Jason Taumalolo and Andrew Fifita will both continue to represent Tonga. Photo / Getty Images

Cronulla Sharks prop Andrew Fifita expressed his decision to continue playing for Tonga going forward earlier in the year, which took him out of consideration for the New South Wales State of Origin squad.

Tongan rep players remain eligible to play State of Origin - only appearances for New Zealand and England make players unavailable - however with Tonga taking on Samoa on the same weekend as Origin II, Fifita would be unavailable for the second match of the series.

Tonga will take on Samoa on June 23, with Origin II being played the following day.

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/league/news/article.cfm?c_id=79&objectid=12070153
 
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mt.wellington

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When you come late to meetings lol. They went easy on him as his partner just gave birth...

 
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mt.wellington

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NRL considers New York option for Kangaroos' Test against Tonga
Michael Chammas Chief Reporter
Wed 18 Jul 2018, 12:07 PM
AusTon NY.png

The NRL is looking at heading into uncharted territory after earmarking the United States for a historic one-off Test between Australia and Tonga at the end of the season.

NRL.com understands the NRL has been exploring the possibility of taking the much-anticipated Test to the New York metropolitan area in October as the game looks to expand its global footprint on the back of a successful World Cup last year.

In a move that highlights the NRL's intention to increase awareness and participation in the world's largest sporting market, the governing body has been working closely with a number of promoters to turn the idea into a reality.

NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg last week hinted at a possible match on foreign soil when he said the governing body was "talking to a number of different promoters" in relation to an end-of-season Test between the Kangaroos and a star-studded Tongan side likely to be held on October 20.

It is believed one of the promoters involved is the group behind the bid for a New York team to play in the English Super League in 2020.

There are factors that need to be considered such as the significant financial output required to cover the costs associated with travel and match payments. There's also the broadcast implications and how the time zone difference would affect Australian viewers.

One venue discussed is Red Bull Arena - the 25,000-seat home ground of Major League Soccer team New York Red Bulls.


Tonga lit up the World Cup last year by making it to the semi-finals.©NRL Photos

As it stands, the Kangaroos will play against New Zealand in a one-off Test in Auckland on October 13.

The Australia-Tonga game has been pencilled in for the following weekend. It's unlikely to be pushed back any further as NRL clubs want their representative players back from their mandatory six-week break as early as possible.

The NRL is keen to expand its tiny footprint in the United States in the lead-up to the 2025 World Cup in North America.

The mid-season Test between England and New Zealand in Denver last month has had mixed reviews, with the timing of the match in the middle of the NRL season the most common criticism.

An end-of-season Test would allay most of the club's fears.

The NRL played a one-off Origin game in Los Angeles in 1987 and failed to gain any traction, however this is part of multi-year plan to grow the game in the United States.

It's expected the NRL will open the season with a game between South Sydney and the Melbourne Storm in Los Angeles or San Francisco next year.

There's also an appetite to continue playing the England-New Zealand Test on American soil despite question marks over the timing and location.

"We don't care where the match is played, we just want to play it," Tonga coach Kristian Woolf said.

"It's important, from our point of view, that we build on the momentum of what has been built the past 12 months."

https://www.nrl.com/news/2018/07/18/nrl-considers-new-york-option-for-kangaroos-test-against-tonga/?utm_source=NRLFBContent&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=NetworkContent
 
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razzrillinger

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Can just see you running around in New York Home Alone 2 style Mt Wellington
 
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Sup42

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Tonga are the new hot girl that joins your class from another school....
The Aussies are the Prom King.

The kiwis are the guy that walks her home carrying her School books wondering why he chose this year to get braces and join the school orchestra.
 
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brightman

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Tonga are the new hot girl that joins your class from another school....
The Aussies are the Prom King.

The kiwis are the guy that walks her home carrying her School books wondering why he chose this year to get braces and join the school orchestra.
Yeah but true to form she relies on her hots, has shit for brains, pops out 3 kids and nearly triples her weight before turning 30 whilst the Australian convict father of her kids ditches her for prison on a intermittent basis..

Meanwhile the kiwi kids with braces grows up to be Simon Mannering, SOLID
 
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brightman

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Fixed that for you...
You know I hope the ARCL and NRL come through for MMT, the proposition of them squaring off in the USA is mouthwatering for the prospects of international RL and the MMT. However I have almost as little faith in the NRL as I do the local ARL, both are very inward looking to the detriment of the NZRL.
 
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mt.wellington

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You know I hope the ARCL and NRL come through for MMT, the proposition of them squaring off in the USA is mouthwatering for the prospects of international RL and the MMT. However I have almost as little faith in the NRL as I do the local ARL, both are very inward looking to the detriment of the NZRL.
You'll see more and more games heading over the USA. With the RLWC happening there in 2025 they'll be wanting to build up as much exposure as possible...
 
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gREVUS

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while i love what they bring on the field, i honestly think that long term this splitting away from NZ is going to be detrimental to league overall. It cuts the knees off of NZ, who maybe able to take it to the Australians, without them, but it is unlikely. Gives a massive boost to League in Tonga, who has a population of what 400K (does that include self identifiers in Aus and NZ?) And realistically cant compete in all positions with Australia, although they will be very strong up front and it will be entertaining.

This creates two teams who alone are both inferior to what they were as one. Australia has a massive player pool, and realistically probably has 3 players for every position, who would all suit international league.

NZ traditionally with the inclusion of Tonga has always struggled to fill all positions with first class players. NZ and Tonga apart are both going to struggle to do this imo. As such Australia will stay dominant and International League will suffer. Once again SOO will become the greatest comp on earth when the easybeats are cleaned up year after year.

Will Tonga hurt the Aussies in the game, sure they will, just as NZ have always given out blood noses and fat lips, but will we see blow out scores when versing the Aussies? IMO we will and international league will suffer for it.
 
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brightman

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You'll see more and more games heading over the USA. With the RLWC happening there in 2025 they'll be wanting to build up as much exposure as possible...
I know, I've been banging on about this for quite sometime. But true to form the NRL clubs and the RLPA are looking to stifle the MMT vs Kangaroos NY Test..
https://www.smh.com.au/sport/nrl/the-big-grapple-nrl-clubs-not-in-a-new-york-state-of-mind-20180719-p4zsi6.html

NZ traditionally with the inclusion of Tonga has always struggled to fill all positions with first class players.
Yeah all those so called Tongan players were born in NZ and selected for rep sides here through age grades then the Kiwis, so actually their NZ people

Will Tonga hurt the Aussies in the game, sure they will, just as NZ have always given out blood noses and fat lips, but will we see blow out scores when versing the Aussies? IMO we will and international league will suffer for it.
It is true that a player can play for a Tier 2 nation like Tonga and still be selected for SOO, so if a player leaves NZ (nation of birth) to play for an NRL club, then chooses to rep Tonga, will he be viewed as eligible for SOO? Yes it weakens the NZRL either way..
 
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gREVUS

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Yeah all those so called Tongan players were born in NZ and selected for rep sides here through age grades then the Kiwis, so actually their NZ people
actually if it werent for the fact that i think this leaves both NZ and Tonga short on players and in a position where Aussie dominates the international scene i would be unconcerned about who they choose to self identify as.
 
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Lance155

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Is a game of Aus vs Tonga confirmed? If so I want Aussie to absolutely kill them as I am sick of seeing their arrogance. I feel like Aus are smarter and won't get caught up in the bash each other game plan.
 
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razzrillinger

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Is a game of Aus vs Tonga confirmed? If so I want Aussie to absolutely kill them as I am sick of seeing their arrogance. I feel like Aus are smarter and won't get caught up in the bash each other game plan.
No it hasn't been. Heard Mal Meninga talking about it in the weekend. They're still looking for a venue.

They've ruled out USA, sounds like they were really keen on Auckland but then the NZRL added their thoughts.

Not sure why they don't just play it at Suncorp or something?
 
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Rick O'Shay

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Probably because there's an average chance they might get beaten and it wouldn't be a good look in front of 50,000 screaming fans at Suncorp
 
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matiunz

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Probably because there's an average chance they might get beaten and it wouldn't be a good look in front of 50,000 screaming fans at Suncorp
I’m not sure it’d sell out, a lot of Australians don’t give a shit about the kangaroos just origin
 
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