Mate Ma'a Tonga centre Michael Jennings has been ruled out of Saturday's test against the Kiwis with a knee injury.
On Monday, Tonga coach Kristian Woolf trimmed his squad down to 19 players, with Jennings being the most notable omission.
Brother Robert and Titans' prop Moeaki Fotuaika have also been released from the squad.
- Michael Maguire hints Benji Marshall, Shaun Johnson to start in halves
- Kiwis winger Jamayne Isaako switches allegiance to Toa Samoa
- Benji Marshall named in wider squad to face Tonga
Eels centre Michael Jennings was the most experienced player in Tonga's squad, with 270 NRL games and 18 State-of-Origin appearances for New South Wales.
"It is a shame to lose Michael, because he has really been playing well for Parramatta," Tongan coach Kristian Woolf said.
"He has also brought wonderful experience to our side through the 2017 World Cup and in tests last year."
The withdrawal means Solomone Kata and Kotoni Staggs will likely start in the centres for Woolf's team. The 17-man playing line-up for the test will be named on Tuesday.
Tonga is also sweating on the availability of prop Andrew Fifita, who is set to face the NRL judiciary to contest a dangerous contact charge.
The NRL match review committee charged the Cronulla prop with a crusher tackle on Canberra's Ryan Sutton and Fifita faces a two-week suspension.
If unsuccessful, Fifita will miss the test, and the Sharks' next two matches against the Bulldogs and Broncos.
Updated Tonga Squad:
Backs: Will Hopoate, David Fusitu'a, Daniel Tupou, Kotoni Staggs, Solomone Kata, John Asiata, Tuimoala Lolohea.
Forwards: Jason Taumalolo, Tevita Pangai jnr, Manu Ma'u, Sitili Tupouniua, Peni Terepo, Andrew Fifita, Addin Fonua-Blake, Siosiua Taukeiaho, Tevita Tatola, Sione Katoa, Manase Fainu, Siliva Havili.
Join us at 5:40pm Saturday for live updates of the NZ Kiwis v Tonga rugby league test