Tonga Coach Kristian Woolf has slammed critics who were having a go at Jason Taumalolo and Andrew Fifita over their decision to play for Tonga.
This comes after former Kiwi captain Benji Marshall openly regarded Taumalolo’s move as disrespectful and even Storms’ Cooper Cronk said Fifita’s move after being named in the Kangaroos was of poor taste.
The drama continues as more critics voice displeasure over Andrew Fifita and Jason Taumalolo’s move to Tonga.
This time, Tongan Coach Kristian Woolf has had enough of it.
Woolf came out in a column on Players Voice saying, “that was the kind of situation he had grown accustomed to after Tonga had long had to deal with players leaving their squad to join top-tier nations”.
The irony is this is the reverse situation of what happened five months ago when Cronulla Sharks Forward Fifita pulled out after being listed to play for Tonga in representative rounds against Fiji, and joined the Kangaroos for the mid-year test against the Kiwis.
Coach Woolf further wrote, “We understand it. We’re very accustomed to it. There are usually three or four late call-ups for us”.
He added that every one of their players and support staff understand and support those players when it goes the other way and it is surprising how little consideration seems to have gone into the reverse situation.
The Coach further defended his team, which also happens to have former NSW State of Origin stars, Will Hopoate, Daniel Tupou and Michael Jennings, along with Kiwi veteran Manu Vatuvei, all who also chose Tonga over top-tier nations.
Tonga will take on New Zealand on November 11th in Hamilton.