Tuesday, September 26, 2023
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No Folau, 5 ex All Blacks in Tonga’s WCup squad

Former Wallabies fullback Israel Folau has not been included in Tonga’s Rugby World Cup squad due to a knee injury.

Folau, a superstar Rugby Union and League attacking utility played 73 tests for the Wallabies, including the 2015 World Cup final, but his contract was cancelled in 2019 for intolerant religious views which saw him switch allegiance to Tonga.

His former Wallabies teammate Adam Coleman has been picked even though he’s yet to play for Tonga.

Coleman played 38 tests for the Wallabies from 2016-19, including their quarterfinal exit at the last World Cup.

His father Pau’u Afeaki captained Tonga in 1983.

The lock hasn’t been available while moving to France from London Irish, which folded last season.

Tonga has also included five former All Blacks: Malakai Fekitoa, a 2015 World Cup winner, as well as Charles Piutau, Augustine Pulu, Vaea Fifita and George Moala.

Moala was chosen even though he’s due to miss the first two World Cup games in France because of a five-game suspension that he is appealing.

The five games were to include a second test against Canada on August 15 and two games for Clermont.

Moala was red-carded for a tip tackle against Canada on August 10. His appeal hearing is on Thursday.

Meanwhile Stade Francais fullback Telusa Veainu, Tonga’s top try-scorer at the 2019 World Cup is also left out due to a hamstring problem.

Tonga’s World Cup campaign starts against Ireland on September 16 in Nantes before they come up against Scotland, South Africa and Romania.

Tonga’s World Cup squad-

Forwards: Sosefo ‘Apikotoa, Adam Coleman, Vaea Fifita, Siegfried Fisi’ihoi, Feao Fotuaika, Solomone Funaki, Tanginoa Halaifonua, Sione Havili Talitui, Tau Kolomatangi, Paula Latu, Samiuela Lousi, Sitiveni Mafi, Siua Maile, Samiuela Moli, Paula Ngauamo, Semisi Paea, Ben Tameifuna, Sione Vailanu.

Backs: Pita Ahki, Malakai Fekitoa, William Havili, Fine Inisi, Solomone Kata, Otumaka Mausia, George Moala, Manu Paea, Charles Piutau, Augustine Pulu, Sonatane Takulua (capt), Kyren Taumoefolau, Afusipa Taumoepeau, Anzelo Tuitavuki.

Reginald Chandar
Reginald Chandar
Head of News & Sports | news@fijilive.com


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