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Tongan Train on Squad

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https://www.nrl.com/news/2018/09/19/cronulla-sharks-forward-scott-sorensen-named-in-tonga-squad-for-test-against-kangaroos/

 

Tonga squad

Andrew Fifita (Cronulla Sharks)
Addin Fonua-Blake (Manly Warringah)
Mahe Fonua (Wests Tigers)
Moeaki Fotuaika (Gold Coast Titans)
David Fusitua (NZ Warriors)
Siliva Havilli (Canberra Raiders)
Ata Hingano (Canberra Raiders)
Will Hopoate (Canterbury Bulldogs)
Koniseti Hurrell (Gold Coast Titans)
Michael Jennings (Parramatta Eels)
Robert Jennings (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Solomone Kata (NZ Warriors)
Sione Katoa (Penrith Panthers)
Samisoni Langi (Catalans Dragons)
Tuimoala Lolohea (Wests Tigers)
Sika Manu (Hull FC)
Sam Moa (Catalans Dragons)
Ben Murdoch-Masila (Warrington Wolves)
Joe Ofahengaue (Brisbane Broncos)
Tevita Pangai jnr (Brisbane Broncos)
Agnatius Paasi (NZ Warriors)
Leivaha Pulu (NZ Warriors)
Scott Sorensen (Cronulla Sharks)
Ukuma Ta'ai (Huddersfield Giants)
Jason Taumalolo (North Qld Cowboys)
Tevita Tatola (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Siosiua Taukeiaho (Sydney Roosters)
Peni Terepo (Parramatta Eels)
Daniel Tupou (Sydney Roosters)

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Strong squad! Outstanding depth in outside backs and halves... As we all know, the spine is their weakness but it's good news Hingano is fit. Keeping their combination from last year will help, as will the fact their hooker and halfback spent the year together at Canberra and both played a fair amount of first grade.

Edited by ghost crayfish
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39 minutes ago, ELBOWSEYE said:

Doubt murdock masila will be available due to having operation. 

Is he having a tummy tuck?

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Good to see the nephew of Kurt and Dane Sorensen getting chosen

Edited by Allora

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I would like to see anotger catagory put on the list attached to the players name, it would consist of BN (Born National) or the initial letter of the country of their birth Australia (A) New Zealand (NZ) or any other country, plus the numbers 1,2, and 3 denoting which removed generation level through parentage they belong to.

This is more for curiosity on my part, it was something I considered when watching the WC, not only relating to Tonga but all the competing teams, it was very noticable when the USA team were competing it was highlighted if a player actually was a Bona-Fide American, even the PNG team was not entirely made up of Nationals, nor the French squad, or even the Australian, NZ and England teams. 

 

 

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13 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

I would like to see anotger catagory put on the list attached to the players name, it would consist of BN (Born National) or the initial letter of the country of their birth Australia (A) New Zealand (NZ) or any other country, plus the numbers 1,2, and 3 denoting which removed generation level through parentage they belong to.

This is more for curiosity on my part, it was something I considered when watching the WC, not only relating to Tonga but all the competing teams, it was very noticable when the USA team were competing it was highlighted if a player actually was a Bona-Fide American, even the PNG team was not entirely made up of Nationals, nor the French squad, or even the Australian, NZ and England teams. 

 

 

Thats the very nature of the world today though. Its where they need the arbitrary rule (grandparents in this instance or residency) so that everyone is on an even footing.. thought over time this will also then cause the smaller nations issues as eventually those that moved to NZ or Aus (for example) will run out of relations to trace back and will have to play for NZ or Aus.. For me its not about where they were born etc as long as they qualify its the fact they can play for 2/3/4 senior nations and go back and forth that is the issue.

looks a good squad though

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21 minutes ago, RP London said:

Thats the very nature of the world today though. Its where they need the arbitrary rule (grandparents in this instance or residency) so that everyone is on an even footing.. thought over time this will also then cause the smaller nations issues as eventually those that moved to NZ or Aus (for example) will run out of relations to trace back and will have to play for NZ or Aus.. For me its not about where they were born etc as long as they qualify its the fact they can play for 2/3/4 senior nations and go back and forth that is the issue.

looks a good squad though

Yeah what you highlight is a real problem Jarred Hayne being a good example, how long will it be before the more astute International bodies request or finance that the expectant partners of these players nip back 'home' to give birth that should sort out the next 40 to 50 years, even then moving straight back would still qualfy the offspring to play for their 'adopted' country under the residency rule!

Edited by Harry Stottle
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If they had a really top level halves pairing they’d be looking anyone in the eye . Fantastic to watch them play , and the supporters 

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50 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

I would like to see anotger catagory put on the list attached to the players name, it would consist of BN (Born National) or the initial letter of the country of their birth Australia (A) New Zealand (NZ) or any other country, plus the numbers 1,2, and 3 denoting which removed generation level through parentage they belong to.

This is more for curiosity on my part, it was something I considered when watching the WC, not only relating to Tonga but all the competing teams, it was very noticable when the USA team were competing it was highlighted if a player actually was a Bona-Fide American, even the PNG team was not entirely made up of Nationals, nor the French squad, or even the Australian, NZ and England teams. 

 

 

Andrew Fifita,       Blacktown NSW AU

Fonua-Blake,  Meadowbrooke NSW AU

Mahe Fonau, Melbourne Au

Fotuaika, Gisborne NZ

Hopoate, Manly NSW AU

Havilli, Auckland NZ

Fusitu'a, Auckland NZ

Hingano, Aukland NZ

Hurrell, Tonga

Michael Jennings, Blacktown NSW AU

Robert Jennings, Blacktown NSW AU

Kata, Tonga

Katoa, Wellington NZ

Langi, Auburn NSW AU

Lolohea, Auckland NZ

Manu, Lower Hutt NZ

Moa, Tonga

Murdoch-Masila, East Auckland NZ

Ofahengaue, Auckland NZ

Pangai Junior, Ashfield NSW AU

Passi, Tonga

Pulu, Tonga

Sorensen, Sydney NSW AU

Ta'ai, Tonga

Taumalolo, Auckland NZ

Tevita Tatola, Auburn NSW AU

Taukeiaho, Auckland NZ

Terepo, Auckland NZ

Tupou, Sydney NSW AU

I am not doing the Ancestry bit, sorry.

I still laugh at the fans on this forum who complained that Willie Tonga should not have been selected for the Kangaroos.

 

 

 

Edited by Allora
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Thank you for that, sorry you did not have the ancestry figures at hand, what do you actually think of it?

Interestingly not a single Queenslander in there.

I am correct in thinking you are Australian?

Edited by Harry Stottle

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I know it shouldn't come into the final merit based team selection, but it is a shame when quality Tongan born players like Kata and Hurrell are overlooked in favour of Aussies. In the world cup they had a former Kangaroo (Jennings) being picked ahead of Kata - a genuine top notch centre in his own right. I'm not suggesting a rule change or anything, but I do feel sorry for a class Tongan product who can't get picked over an Aussie. And I would hate if Kata ever switched to NZ as a result.

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23 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

Yeah what you highlight is a real problem Jarred Hayne being a good example, how long will it be before the more astute International bodies request or finance that the expectant partners of these players nip back 'home' to give birth that should sort out the next 40 to 50 years, even then moving straight back would still qualfy the offspring to play for their 'adopted' country under the residency rule!

actually to be fair i hadn't thought of that... simply being born in countries that entitle you to have a passport.. yeah that wouldnt be great... hell of a lot of planning though but for people who have been playing and have the "long list" of parents & grandparents playing at the top level its not beyond the realms to think its worth a try! 

I agree with your initial post and personally i would find it interesting (though not really relevant and not something we want to be too far out in the public domain) but whether they played age grade etc for other countries too.. 

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2 minutes ago, ghost crayfish said:

I know it shouldn't come into the final merit based team selection, but it is a shame when quality Tongan born players like Kata and Hurrell are overlooked in favour of Aussies. In the world cup they had a former Kangaroo (Jennings) being picked ahead of Kata - a genuine top notch centre in his own right. I'm not suggesting a rule change or anything, but I do feel sorry for a class Tongan product who can't get picked over an Aussie. And I would hate if Kata ever switched to NZ as a result.

IMHO the issue is the bit in bold (though i understand what you mean on a personal level for Kata)... the rest is the way of things, if he qualifies as a Tongan then there isnt much you can do and if he is proud to wear the shirt etc.. but the bit in bold would stick in my throught..

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6 minutes ago, RP London said:

IMHO the issue is the bit in bold (though i understand what you mean on a personal level for Kata)... the rest is the way of things, if he qualifies as a Tongan then there isnt much you can do and if he is proud to wear the shirt etc.. but the bit in bold would stick in my throught..

Yeah agreed, but even regarding the bit in bold - I'm not even looking for a rule to prevent that. I mean, that'd equal bye bye Fifita, Taumolo and others (possibly including Kata, who I think has played for NZ?). I'm just saying it's a shame for guys like Kata to miss out, but totally understand it's the way of things. Once a player qualifies, in whatever fashion, they're then picked on merit. 

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4 minutes ago, RP London said:

IMHO the issue is the bit in bold (though i understand what you mean on a personal level for Kata)... the rest is the way of things, if he qualifies as a Tongan then there isnt much you can do and if he is proud to wear the shirt etc.. but the bit in bold would stick in my throught..

This wont be an issue soon as it wont be long before Tonga are promoted to a tier 1 nation ending their nation swapping days. There is a push for it from the Tongan players. 

As for the ancestry thing I think there are 2 types of heritage teams. Those that are embraced by the nation they represent and supported and those that are not.

The Pacific Nations, Lebanon are in a lucky position where they can field a team of guys born in Sydney or New Zealand and have massive support from the nation they represent. Ireland, Scoltand, Wales, Italy and the USA probably Canada as well I think you need a majority of the team to be born in that nation as well as they be high quality before they gain national public and media support. 

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48 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

Thank you for that, sorry you did not have the ancestry figures at hand, what do you actually think of it?

Interestingly not a single Queenslander in there.

I am correct in thinking you are Australian?

Queensland would have more Maoris, PNG  and perhaps Samoans than Tongans, Sydney and NSW has the most as it is a much larger City and populous State.

I am not a supporter of Heritage teams, I think they are contrived to a large extent to fill out squads at World Cup time and make our game look larger than it really is.

I know people have different opinions on where players hearts lie and heritage regarding which country they want to represent, I have my own opinion.

I am Australian.

 

 

 

Edited by Allora
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27 minutes ago, B rad said:

This wont be an issue soon as it wont be long before Tonga are promoted to a tier 1 nation ending their nation swapping days. There is a push for it from the Tongan players. 

As for the ancestry thing I think there are 2 types of heritage teams. Those that are embraced by the nation they represent and supported and those that are not.

The Pacific Nations, Lebanon are in a lucky position where they can field a team of guys born in Sydney or New Zealand and have massive support from the nation they represent. Ireland, Scoltand, Wales, Italy and the USA probably Canada as well I think you need a majority of the team to be born in that nation as well as they be high quality before they gain national public and media support. 

I do not think Tonga will be a tier one nations anytime soon.

They would have to beat everyone below them and a few above them before that was realistic.

Beating a second rate under strength NZ with a poor Coach and running England close in the dying throes of a game (where England often get run down) is not a sign of making the leap to tier one IMO.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RLIF_World_Rankings

 

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1 hour ago, Allora said:

I still laugh at the fans on this forum who complained that Willie Tonga should not have been selected for the Kangaroos.

It is a bit ungrateful though to play for someone else when you've had a whole country named after you.

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Tonga have a decent squad here but still halves are lacking.... Can't see them staying with Oz late on in the game. Still should be a big one and I'm keen to see more of these games hopefully with a 9-12 month lead in time... 

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19 minutes ago, Allora said:

I do not think Tonga will be a tier one nations anytime soon.

They would have to beat everyone below them and a few above them before that was realistic.

Beating a second rate under strength NZ with a poor Coach and running England close in the dying throes of a game (where England often get run down) is not a sign of making the leap to tier one IMO.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RLIF_World_Rankings

 

So they beat one of the Tier one nations narrowly lost a semi final to another, would wipe the floor with every team below them regularly beating samoa but they aren't ready to be a Tier one nation?

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58 minutes ago, gillmeister said:

So they beat one of the Tier one nations narrowly lost a semi final to another, would wipe the floor with every team below them regularly beating samoa but they aren't ready to be a Tier one nation?

Sorry Axe, No

They do not have the depth and could be just in a purple patch with a few decent heritage Aussies and Kiwis choosing to nominate for Tonga last year.

Lets see how they do in the end of season games against the Kiwis and Oz.

How will they look in a couple of years time when their stars do not align.

Since they contested World Cups.

1995, 7th out of 10

2000, 9th out of 16

2008, 7th out of 10

2013, 9th out of 14

2017 3rd out of 14

Is a tier one nation a temporary thing for a year or two?

Edited by Allora

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Suggested team from the Fraser Coast Chronicle, who ever they are. 

https://www.frasercoastchronicle.com.au/news/tonga-name-their-preliminary-squad-for-historic-te/3525304/

PREDICTED XVII

1. Will Hopoate 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Michael Jennings 4. Konrad Hurrell 5. David Fusitu'a 6. Tui Lolohea 7. Ata Hingano 8. Andrew Fifita 9. Siliva Havili 10. Joe Ofahengaue 11. Tevita Pangai Jr 12. Sika Manu 13. Jason Taumalolo 14. Sione Katoa 15. Addin Fonua-Blake 16. Ben Murdoch-Masila 17. Agnatius Paasi

 

Not the team Id go with though

1 Hopoate 2 R Jennings 3 M Jennings 4 Fonua 5 Fusitua 6 Loloahea 7 Hingano 8 Fifita 9 Havilli 10 Fonua-Blake 11 Pangai jnr 12 Paasi 13 Taumalolo 14 Ofahengaue 15 Murdoch-Masila 16 Katoa 17 Hurrell

 

No David Fifita from the Broncos in the train on squad. He did pick up an injury in his last game, or maybe he is a bit inexperienced to make the squad or maybe he just decided not to play for Tonga. If he was there Id defiantly have him off the bench in place of Hurrell.

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22 hours ago, Yakkers said:

It is a bit ungrateful though to play for someone else when you've had a whole country named after you.

I agree. What's Sam Moa being named in the Tongan squad for?

23 hours ago, ghost crayfish said:

I know it shouldn't come into the final merit based team selection, but it is a shame when quality Tongan born players like Kata and Hurrell are overlooked in favour of Aussies. In the world cup they had a former Kangaroo (Jennings) being picked ahead of Kata - a genuine top notch centre in his own right.

Kata got injured in the first game of the WC, but this season he has been closer to bottom notch IMO. Mind you so have has Mennings

Pulu was born in NZ, not Tonga.

I reckon Tonga are going to struggle against Australia. Their halves have been injured or in reserve grade for most of the year and I don't think they'll have the creativity to unlock Australia's defence

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