Rugby league: Tonga name squad to take on Australia

  • 19/09/2018
Paasi last played for Tonga in 2014.
Paasi last played for Tonga in 2014. Photo credit: Photosport

Tonga coach Kristian Woolf has praised the players' commitment to the Mate Ma'a cause after naming a strong 29-man squad for next month's historic Test against the Kangaroos in Auckland.

Cronulla wrecking ball Andrew Fifita and North Queensland's Jason Taumalolo look set to spearhead a monster pack in Tonga's first Test against Australia.

Warriors prop Agnatius Paasi has been rewarded for his breakthrough NRL season, recalled for a chance to add to the lone cap he earned for Tonga back in 2014.

Tonga's forward depth also includes Brisbane duo Tevita Pangai and Joe Ofahengaue, Sharks' Scott Sorensen and South Sydney's Tevita Taola.

Woolf will also have speed to burn for the October 30 clash after naming leading NRL tryscorer David Fusitu'a, Parramatta's Michael Jennings, South Sydney winger Robert Jennings and Sydney Roosters' Daniel Tupou.

The preliminary squad also includes five UK Super League-based players - Sika Manu (Hull FC), Samisoni Langi, Sam Moa (Catalans Dragons), Ben Murdoch-Masila (Warrington) and Ukuma Ta'ai (Huddersfield).

Woolf looked forward to some selection headaches before announcing his final squad next month and taking them on a 10-day camp.

"We are very pleased with the depth in the squad we have managed to name for this very important Test match," he said.

"We feel it is representative of the depth of Tongan rugby league in both the NRL and English Super League and also rewards players that have made a firm commitment to playing for their country of heritage.

"This will be a huge occasion for Tonga to take on the top-ranked rugby league country in the world, so we need every player we can committed to that goal."

Tonga squad: Andrew Fifita (Cronulla), Addin Fonua-Blake (Manly), Mahe Fonua (Wests Tigers), Moeaki Fotuaika (Gold Coast), David Fusitua (Warriors), Siliva Havilli (Canberra), Ata Hingano (Canberra), Will Hopoate (Canterbury), Koniseti Hurrell (Gold Coast), Michael Jennings (Parramatta), Robert Jennings (South Sydney), Solomone Kata (Warriors), Sione Katoa (Penrith), Samisoni Langi (Catalans), Tuimoala Lolohea (Wests Tigers), Sika Manu (Hull FC), Sam Moa (Catalans), Ben Murdoch-Masila (Warrington), Joe Ofahengaue (Brisbane), Tevita Pangai (Brisbane), Agnatius Paasi (Warriors), Leivaha Pulu (Warriors), Scott Sorensen (Cronulla), Ukuma Ta'ai (Huddersfield), Jason Taumalolo (North Queensland), Tevita Tatola (South Sydney), Siosiua Taukeiaho (Sydney Roosters), Peni Terepo (Parramatta), Daniel Tupou (Sydney Roosters).

AAP