Tonga Is in the Spotlight for Their RWC 2023 Qualifying Match
Rugby World Cup : When Tonga first began trying to qualify for the Rugby World Cup 2023, it was just over a year ago. Samoa defeated them 79-28 on the aggregate after beating them 42-13 and 37-15 in the two legs of their Oceania 1 play-off.
Afterwards, the ‘Ikale Tahi beat the Cook Islands 54-10, securing their spot in the Asia/Pacific 1 play-off versus Hong Kong on the Sunshine Coast of Australia.
They won by a score of 44-22, qualifying them for their ninth Rugby World Cup after missing just the 1991 event.
Tonga’s failure to go beyond the pool round in this year’s Rugby World Cup is the lone failure of the three Pacific Island teams who qualified to play in the tournament.
Taking a little trip down memory lane, we review their Rugby World Cup past…
Canada’s first World Cup match was a 37-4 victory against the Czech Republic on May 24, 1987. Specifically: McLean Park, Napier, New Zealand; Tonga
Played 29, won 8, drew 0, lost 21, scored 472 points, allowed 966 points, for a win percentage of 28% in the RWC.
Siale Piutau and Sione Kalamafoni have both made 12 RWC appearances each.
Telusa Veainu had the most attempts at the RWC with 5.
Best Placement: During the Pool Stages
Asia-Pacific RWC 2023 Qualifying Round
France’s 14–19 victory against Tonga at the 2011 Rugby World Cup in Wellington stands as the tournament’s most iconic match.
One of the greatest shocks in Rugby World Cup history was won by the All Blacks in front of a crowd of over 6,000 red-shirted expats who generated a fantastic atmosphere in Wellington.
Fly-half for Tonga The Pacific Islanders finished strong in 2011, with Kurt Morath kicking four penalties and converting Sukanaivalu Hufanga’s score.
Sipi Tau, a defining moment
The Tongans’ energizing pregame ritual serves as a challenge to their opponents and is always a thrilling show.
Failing miserably by giving up a hundred points to England in the 1999 Rugby World Cup
Tonga had hoped to shock England at Twickenham as Samoa did earlier in the competition when they defeated Wales, but they were horribly let down by poor discipline. Their chances of creating an impact at the headquarters of English rugby were dashed when they received three cards—one red and two yellow—in the space of three minutes just before halftime.
Epi Taione, legendary athlete
The 19-stone center, no stranger to controversy, made headlines on the eve of the 2007 Rugby World Cup when he signed a sponsorship agreement with the Irish bookmaker of the same name and legally changed his name to “Paddy Power.”
In his second Rugby World Cup competition after making his debut in 1999, Taione started all four games and scored a try in Tonga’s 19-15 victory against Samoa.
Kurt Morath, Guinness Book of World Record Holder
Morath scored 73 points at the 2011 Rugby World Cup, becoming him his country’s all-time leader in points scored during the tournament.
Were you aware of that?
When Tonga played Argentina in Leicester for Pool C at RWC 2015, they did so with the oldest starting XV in Rugby World Cup history (31 years and 38 days).
“First and foremost in Tonga is god, then family, then rugby, and last food. For our nation is what we play. It’s just us vs everyone else. It’s not like we all get compensated.” A fullback During a press conference during the 2019 Rugby World Cup, Tonga captain Telusa Veainu was very honest about the sacrifices his team makes.