20°C / 22°C
  • Thu
  • 23°C
  • 15°C
  • Fri
  • 25°C
  • 15°C
  • Sat
  • 25°C
  • 15°C
  • Sun
  • 28°C
  • 14°C
  • Mon
  • 29°C
  • 11°C
  • Tue
  • 24°C
  • 14°C
  • Thu
  • 21°C
  • 14°C
  • Fri
  • 22°C
  • 14°C
  • Sat
  • 20°C
  • 14°C
  • Sun
  • 21°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 23°C
  • 13°C
  • Tue
  • 26°C
  • 15°C
  • Thu
  • 23°C
  • 16°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 27°C
  • 16°C
  • Sun
  • 29°C
  • 16°C
  • Mon
  • 31°C
  • 15°C
  • Tue
  • 26°C
  • 15°C
  • Thu
  • 25°C
  • 16°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 15°C
  • Sat
  • 28°C
  • 16°C
  • Sun
  • 29°C
  • 16°C
  • Mon
  • 31°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 28°C
  • 17°C
  • Thu
  • 25°C
  • 18°C
  • Fri
  • 24°C
  • 19°C
  • Sat
  • 27°C
  • 20°C
  • Sun
  • 26°C
  • 20°C
  • Mon
  • 23°C
  • 17°C
  • Tue
  • 26°C
  • 16°C
  • Thu
  • 20°C
  • 12°C
  • Fri
  • 20°C
  • 14°C
  • Sat
  • 21°C
  • 15°C
  • Sun
  • 21°C
  • 16°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 15°C
  • Tue
  • 21°C
  • 13°C
  • Thu
  • 23°C
  • 10°C
  • Fri
  • 26°C
  • 10°C
  • Sat
  • 23°C
  • 12°C
  • Sun
  • 21°C
  • 10°C
  • Mon
  • 26°C
  • 8°C
  • Tue
  • 32°C
  • 11°C
  • Thu
  • 19°C
  • 12°C
  • Fri
  • 20°C
  • 12°C
  • Sat
  • 20°C
  • 14°C
  • Sun
  • 19°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 20°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 25°C
  • 13°C
  • Thu
  • 25°C
  • 17°C
  • Fri
  • 29°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 29°C
  • 17°C
  • Sun
  • 31°C
  • 15°C
  • Mon
  • 32°C
  • 13°C
  • Tue
  • 24°C
  • 17°C
  • Thu
  • 30°C
  • 12°C
  • Fri
  • 33°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 33°C
  • 15°C
  • Sun
  • 33°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 31°C
  • 14°C
  • Tue
  • 33°C
  • 14°C
  • Thu
  • 27°C
  • 16°C
  • Fri
  • 25°C
  • 18°C
  • Sat
  • 29°C
  • 18°C
  • Sun
  • 30°C
  • 18°C
  • Mon
  • 22°C
  • 16°C
  • Tue
  • 24°C
  • 14°C
  • Thu
  • 19°C
  • 9°C
  • Fri
  • 21°C
  • 10°C
  • Sat
  • 21°C
  • 13°C
  • Sun
  • 20°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 25°C
  • 11°C

Tonga 'fixated' on making World Cup playoffs - coach

Tonga have been drawn with England, France, Argentina and the United States in Pool C, with only the top two teams to advance to the quarterfinals.

Ananaki Lelei Mafi of Japan (R) attempts to run past Tonga's players during the Pacific Nations Cup rugby union match between Japan and Tonga at Hanazono stadium in Higashiosaka, Osaka prefecture on 3 August 2019. Picture: AFP

WELLINGTON - Tonga coach Toutai Kefu has targeted a maiden playoffs berth for the Pacific island nation at the Rugby World Cup despite the team being pooled in what looms as the toughest group at the tournament in Japan.

Tonga have been drawn with England, France, Argentina and the United States in Pool C, with only the top two teams to advance to the quarterfinals.

Former Australia loose forward Kefu was aiming high despite 15th-ranked Tonga’s shaky leadup form, which has included a loss to Fiji at Eden Park last Saturday after defeats to Samoa and Japan at the Pacific Nations Cup.

“I’m fixated on making the playoffs,” Kefu told reporters in Hamilton, New Zealand, after naming his 31-man World Cup squad.

“We need to win three games for that.

“We’re in a tough pool, there’s no doubt about it. We just need to get together and believe in what we’re doing, and believe that we can make it. And I certainly think we can.”

Tonga meet world champions New Zealand in a final warmup in Hamilton on Saturday before they head to Japan where they face England in their World Cup opener at Sapporo on Sept. 22.

Tonga Squad:

Forwards - Siegfried ‘Fisiihoi, Vunipola Fifita, Latu ‘Talakai, Paula ‘Ngauamo, Sosefo ‘Sakalia, Siua Maile, Siua ‘Halanukonuka, Ma’afu Fia, Ben Tameifuna, Sam Lousi, Leva Fifita, Sitiveni Mafi, Sione Kalamafoni, Maama ‘Vaipulu, Fotu ‘Lokotui, Zane ‘Kapeli, Dan Faleafa, Nasi Manu

Backs - Sonatane Takulua, Leon ‘Fukofuka, Samisoni Fisilau, Kurt Morath, James ‘Faiva, Siale Piutau, Malietoa Hingano, Nafi Tuitavake, Atieli Pakalani, David Halaifonua, Viliami Lolohea, Cooper Vuna, Telusa Veainu.

Comments

EWN welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

- Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
- Sexism
- Homophobia
- Religious intolerance
- Cyber bullying
- Hate speech
- Derogatory language
- Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the EWN community a safe and welcoming space for all.

EWN reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

EWN is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

comments powered by Disqus