Tonga’s Hosting Wales in June is Still Uncertain

Wales Rugby Union CEO Martyn Phillipes confirms with Planet Rugby saying Tonga’s Teufaiva Park is nowhere near what you would need to host a game, although Tonga is committing to get to that. 

Meanwhile the Deputy Prime Minister, Hon Siaosi Sovaleni told Radio and Television Tonga’s Sports News they’ve tendered the construction but the few companies who have submitted their bids, lack the professionalism to carry out the work.

He says, they are giving bidding parties a chance this week to complete the requirements.

WRU chief Phillips admits 'uncertainty' over Tonga tour venue

Wales are due to play two matches in the Pacific Islands, against Tonga and Samoa in June.

"There are still some things to iron out with Tonga, mainly that there isn't a pitch at the moment," he said.

"The stadium infrastructure is not in place so we are meeting with World Rugby again," Phillips added.

The game against the Samoans is scheduled for 24 June in the country's capital city Apia with relatively few qualms about that fixture.

Fifa fines England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland over poppies

England and Scotland players wore armbands featuring the symbol when they met at Wembley on 11 November.

Wales and Northern Ireland's respective games featured displays on the pitch or in the stands to mark the event.

England's Football Association will appeal against the fine of 45,000 Swiss francs (£35,311), with Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland yet to decide.

Scotland and Wales were both fined 20,000 Sfr (£15,694), and Northern Ireland 15,000 Sfr (£11,770).

Former Tongan player hopeful of hosting Wales

Manu Vunipola, who now works for the Ministry of Sport as a development officer, said he helped host a Welsh delegation which visited the kingdom this month.

Wales is scheduled to play Tonga next year but the venue of the match is dependent on the dilapidated Teufaiva Stadium being renovated in time.

If not, the fixture could be moved to New Zealand.

Vunipola said he was hopeful the game would still be held in Tonga after showing the visitors around.

"We went to the hospital, we went to the hotel," he said.

Tonga rugby stadium being assessed for Wales' June 2017 tour

Medical and playing facilities are under review there.

Teufaiva Stadium in Nukuʻalofa is being rebuilt for the 2019 Pacific Games and WRU chairman Gareth Davies says the work may not be completed in time for Wales visit.

If the stadium does not meet criteria, Tonga will play Wales in New Zealand.

Samoa are also scheduled to host Wales on Saturday, 24 June.

Wales tour of Pacific in doubt

Tests are scheduled in Samoa and Tonga in June, but the games could be moved to New Zealand.

RNZ reports the Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) say they want to play on the islands, but will pursue alternatives if guarantees over player welfare are not met.

The sport's governing body, World Rugby, helps tier two countries meet costs of hosting tier one nations.

World Rugby helped with appropriate medical cover when New Zealand played Samoa in Apia in 2015.

All Blacks wallop Wales in Wellington

Barrett, who replaced Aaron Cruden in the first half after his fellow first five suffered a neck injury, broke the game open by setting up Ben Smith's try then scored himself after Wales had fought back to 10-10 at half-time.

Cruden's injury, which local radio reported as being a suspected 'compression neck injury' had actually brought the Welsh back into the game with the 27-year-old needing treatment for about 10 minutes before being carried off on a stretcher.

All Blacks skipper promises more clinical approach

RNZI reports the hosts are seeking to wrap up the three-Test series with a game to spare, a win in Wellington tonight would achieve just that.

Read conceded the All Blacks were rusty in last week's win at Eden Park but he said tonight's effort should be a significant improvement.

Welsh fans banking on passion

RNZI reports in 31 matches and 111 years the Welsh rugby team have won only three times - most recently in 1953.

They gave it a good effort in the first half last week at Eden Park, but still ended up getting thrashed 39-21.

Hansen names experienced All Blacks lineup

RNZI reports the All Blacks matchday 23 features an experienced core of senior players and new talent, with 720 caps in the squad and an average of 31 caps per player.

One other key feature of the squad is the naming of two new players, loose forward Ardie Savea and midfielder Seta Tamanivalu, who could make their All Blacks Test debuts off the bench.

Hansen said: "Whilst the opposition might believe that we're vulnerable because it's our first Test and we have lost some experienced players, we don't have that mindset."