Pacific Nations Cup: Injuries force changes to ‘Ikale Tahi line up

Fetongi e toko ua ‘i he timi ‘Ikale Tahi ki he Tokonaki' teu tau ko ia mo Georgia ‘a ia ko e tupu ‘eni mei ha lavea. Ko George Taina fetongi ia ‘e James Faiva mei he Tonga A pea ko e huka Sione Lea fetongi ia ‘e Ben Tameifuna mei he Racing 92.

Tonga’s head coach Toutai Kefu has been forced to make two injury-related changes to the squad for Saturday’s Pacific Nations Cup match against the Georgians in Fiji.

Flyhalf George Taina is replaced by utility back James Faiva, from the Tonga A.

Hooker Sione Lea is replaced by Prop Ben Tameifuna from Racing 92.

The changes came after Kefu announced his Ikale Tahi 30 man squad on May 21.

TRU said this tournament is a key preparation step towards the World Cup in 2019.

Test Match schedule is as follows:

  • June 9th: vs Georgia, Suva, Fiji
  • June 16th: vs Samoa, Suva, Fiji
  • June 23rd: vs Fiji, Nadi, Fiji

Siale Piutau will captain the side with the six uncapped players selected for the campaign.

Four new staff also join the team, among them former All Black Pita Alatini joins as Assistant Coach and former ‘Ikale Tahi captain ‘Inoke Afeaki joins the staff as Team Manager for the tour and will be assisted by Tony Alatini.

The Team:

Position Name Last Name Village CLUB
Prop Siegfried Fisi’ihoi Falaleu & ‘Utui (Vv) Stade Francais
Prop David Lolohea Ha’asini (Tt) West Harbour Pirates
Prop David Feao Kolovai (Tt) Narbonne
Hooker Sione Lea Vaimalo (Vv) Taranaki
Hooker Paula Ngauamo Vaini, Kolomotu’a, Fasi & Kolofo’ou (Tt) Agen
Hooker Sefo Sakalia Ma’ufanga (Tt) & Nomuka (Hp) Rugby Steaua
Prop Siua Halanukonuka Hoi (Tt) Glasgow
Prop Vunipola Fifita Kala’au and Malapo (Tt) Souths Magpies
Prop Paea Fa’anunu Leimatu’a (Vv) Castres
Lock Sitiveni Mafi ‘Ahau (Tt) & Kolovai (Tt) Castres
Lock Leva Fifita Neiafu (Vv) Waikato
Lock Joe Tu’ineau Fasi Moe Afi (Tt) DAX
Lock Dan Faleafa Kolomotu’a & Kolovai (Tt) US Colomiers
Backrow Mike Faleafa Kolomotu’a & Kolovai (Tt) Perpignan
Backrow Valentino Mapapalangi Holonga & Ha’alalo (Tt) Leicester Tigers
Backrow Fotu Lokotui Longoteme (Tt) Counties Manukau
Backrow Maama Vaipulu Folaha (Tt) Castres
Backrow Nasi Manu Vaini & Ha’ateiho (Tt) Treviso
Halfback Sonatane Takulua Lapaha, Ma’ufanga (Tt) & Niuatoputapu Newcastle Falcons
Halfback Suke Tuumotooa Houma (Tt) NEC Green Rockets
Flyhalf Kurt Morath Leimatu’a (Vv) Utah Warriors
Flyhalf Latiume Fosita Haveluloto (Tt) & Felemea (Hp) Counties Manukau
Flyhalf George Taina Vaini (Tt) Tonga A
Centre Siale Piutau Kolofo’ou & Folaha (Tt) Bristol Bears
Centre Nafi Tu’itavake Kolomotu’a (Tt) & Malapo (Tt) Northampton Saints
Wing Sione Fifita Hihifo (Hp) Counties Manukau
Wing Penikolo Latu Mataika (Vv) University of Waikato
Wing Cooper Vuna Houma (Tt) Bath
Wing Viliami Lolohea Navutoka (Tt) & Niuatoputapu Tasman
Fullback David Halaifonua Fatumu & Tukulalo, Houma (Vv) Gloucester

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