World Cup News | BBC Sport
Rugby League World Cup 2000
Ray French's team guide
The teams
Choose a team for squad profiles:
Australia
England
Fiji
Russia
New Zealand
Lebanon
Wales
Cook Islands
France
Tonga
Papua New Guinea
South Africa
Scotland
Ireland
Samoa
NZ Maori
World Cup News

Tonga
Tonga
Tonga
The Tongan squad:

Martin Masella (captain)
Paul Fisiiahi
Nuko Hifo
Phil Howlett
Lipina Kaufusi
Malupo Kaufusi
Brent Kite
Paul Koloi
Andrew Leota
Talite Liava'a
Filimone Lolohea
Nelson Lomi
Andrew Lomu
Duane Mann
Esau Mann
Willie Manu
Willie Mason
Alfons Masella
Fifita Moala
Albert Talipeau
Tevita Vaikona
Daniel Vasau
Greg Wolfgramme
Willie Wolfgramme
Group 3 news

Tonga are making their second appearance in a World Cup and they will always be remembered for their epic clash with New Zealand in the '95 competition. They were narrowly defeated 25-24 that day thanks to a last-minute Matthew Ridge drop goal. Whether coach John Murray can raise his squad to such heights again is debatable… particularly as they are missing two key players this time around.

Captain Jim Dymock, a member of Australia's World Cup winning side in 1995, has opted to miss the tournament with his home country Tonga while he prepared to get married and then join the London Broncos next season.

Winger John Hopoate has a three-match suspension to serve and he was not considered a worthwhile passenger as he would only get the chance to play from the quarter-finals onwards - and Tonga may not last that long.

All is not lost though as Tonga have held onto exciting runners Phil Howlett and Bradford Bulls' Tevita Vaikona, both of them veterans from that epic clash with the Kiwis.

Warrington's latest signing Martin Masella takes his place in a pack containing another Warrington old boy, veteran front-rower Duane Mann. Queanbeyan Kangaroos' Wille Wolfgramm, a lively hooker, will add his guile to the pack, which could lack a little pace to counteract any speedy French or South African forwards in the early matches.