Charles Piutau

'You’ll see that': Piutau backs revamped Tonga to produce at the World Cup

This year’s World Cup in France is first since the eligibility laws were amended to allow players to switch nations following a stand-down period.

For Piutau, who lost eligibility for the All Blacks when he took up a deal with Premiership side Wasps in 2015, will be able to represent Tonga and attend the first World Cup of his career.

Speaking to 1News on Zoom from Japan after the announcement of his new deal with the Shizuoka Blue Revs, Piutau was ecstatic over the possibility of playing in France for the nation of his family heritage.

Four Pasifika players named in World XV side

Tonga's Ikale Tahi squad members Israel Folau and Charles Piutau will be joined by Fijians, Wallaby winger Marika Koroibete and Flying Fijians centre Semi Radradra.

They have been named by former World Cup-winning All Blacks coach Sir Steve Hansen reports RNZ Pacific.

Koroibete won the John Eales Medal for the second time last month and Jones will get a close look at how a coach of Hansen's standing plans to go about neutralising one of his key weapons.

The May 28 fixture will see Barbarians coach Eddie Jones also using Tonga's Wales number eight Taulupe Faletau.

Piutau impressed with players taking advantage of World Rugby’s new eligibility law

World Rugby’s new eligibility law enables test-capped players who haven’t played international rugby for at least three years to represent a second nation that they are qualified for via birthright.

Representing his home team Tonga, Piutau says that this year’s Pacific Nations Cup will be the one that no one will want to miss.

“With some guys that have used the eligibility rule, the likes of (Israel) Folau, Malakai (Fekitoa) and few of the forwards. It would be great to see those guys’ experience and see their flair and x-factor.”

Stars lining up to play for Ikale Tahi

The former All Black and Wallaby representatives were named in a team announcement by the Tonga Rugby Union today.

It is a historic moment for Pacific rugby, with eligibility rules now allowing Pacific Islanders players to play for their home countries.

'Ikale Tahi head coach Toutai Kefu said the selection will make a huge difference to the quality of Tongan rugby.

Charles Piutau set to launch rugby's first NFT

Those magic feet of his, so often used to make other rugby players look foolish, have tiptoed outside. His fleeting thought to me as our call begins is that he hopes it doesn’t rain.

His brow furrows as we talk about Bristol and how things are going. The turnaround from the side so dazzling for the last couple of seasons is flummoxing. With just Bath beneath them in the Premiership table, before the EPCR postponement news of their fixture with Stade Francais, Bristol were no doubt trying to realise some form in Europe, helped by a Covid pass in the first round.

Charles Piutau confirms intention to switch nationality to represent Tonga

Piutau, who was born in Auckland and won 17 caps for the All Blacks, is a high-profile beneficiary of a major change to rugby union's international eligibility rules.

And the Bristol back hopes it starts a revolution in Pacific Island rugby.

"I'm really happy for the Pacific nations," Piutau said.

The 30-year-old told the BBC's Sports Desk podcast: "It's not the answer to everything - it's just the start.

SBW and Piutau could play for Tonga at 2023 World Cup

Former Wallaby Israel Folau and former All Black Charles Piutau, two of the highest paid rugby players in the world in recent years, would now be able to represent Tonga at the 2023 World Cup.

"WE DID IT," proclaimed the Twitter feed of Pacific Rugby Welfare (PRW), which campaigned for the change under the hashtag #LetThemPlay.

PRW chief executive Daniel Leo thanked the World Rugby Council for making the change.

World Rugby to vote on eligibility rule change which could see Charles Piutau represent Tonga

Tonga face England at Twickenham on Saturday missing around 20 players because of travel restrictions while dozens more of Tongan born or second generation stars are representing other countries. Under World Rugby Regulation 9, players cannot represent another nation after they have been capped for another country. Charles Piutau, the outstanding Bristol Bears full back, last represented New Zealand before the 2015 World Cup and has repeatedly expressed his desire to switch allegiances to Tonga.

Charles Piutau's Tongan dream not over yet

This weekend's Olympic Sevens Qualifier had been earmarked as a chance for the 29 year old to complete his switch from New Zealand to Tonga, who he represented at age grade level.

Players can switch their international allegiance by playing in an Olympic qualifying event, provided they have a passport for the second country and have completed a stand down period of three years.

Piutau played the last of his 17 tests for the All Blacks six years ago and previously stated he would love to represent his Tongan heritage.

‘Very slim chance’ Charles Piutau will switch to Tonga

Piutau had hoped to feature for the Ikale Tahi ahead of the 2023 World Cup, but will most likely see that dream shot down due to World Rugby’s eligibility rules.

The governing body has stated that Piutau needed to be stood down for three years from the All Blacks, which he has already achieved. However, the back also has to play for the Tongan 7s team at the Olympic qualifying tournament in Monaco later this year.

And Kefu admits that it is unlikely Piutau will be allowed to feature for the Ikale Tahi, given Piutau’s club commitments with Bristol.