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Three Titans named for New Zealand Pacific Test

Three Gold Coast Titans have been named for the upcoming Pacific Test between New Zealand and Tonga in Auckland.

Eight-game International prop Isaac Liu and debutant Erin Clark have been called up to represent the Kiwis; meanwhile, barnstorming forward Moeaki Fotuaika has been named in the Mate Ma'a squad - although is also in contention for a Queensland recall for Game II in Perth the same weekend.

Under International eligibility rules, Fotuaika can play for both his state and Tonga.

The clash will be the first rugby league Test for the home nation in over two and half years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the pair last facing off in the corresponding fixture in 2019 - New Zealand getting a 34-14 win over Tonga.

Kiwi head coach Michael Maguire said it will be special to return to Aotearoa and play in front of their home fans.

“I know how much the black and white jersey means to these players,” said Maguire.

“To finally return home after two years and play for your country in front of fans and whānau, this Test will be special.

“This squad has an exciting mix of fresh talent and experienced Kiwis having some of their best seasons.

“Some difficult decisions have had to be made, but it’s a positive sign of our depth in certain positions.

"With the quality of Kiwi talent on display throughout the NRL, we are in a strong place as we look to build a solid foundation ahead of the Rugby League World Cup come October.”

Tonga will be coached by caretaker coach Dean Young for this match with Kristian Woolf unavailable because of English Super League duties with St Helens, however will watch from abroad and said Tonga had named its strongest available squad as the Pacific nation looks towards providing the best possible squad for the end-of-season World Cup in England.

“We have named a powerful squad that includes experienced players who have helped Tonga to victories in the past,” Woolf said.

“There is also a sprinkling of new players in the squad who will be important as we move forward in a World Cup year and beyond.

“There are players that can play both State of Origin and for Tonga and a decision on where they play will be made by Sunday when both interstate and international teams are selected for next week’s representative matches.

“What we don’t wish to happen is that players who have this dual eligibility are not picked in one squad and then miss out on being available to play in another other team."

New Zealand squad

Nelson Asofa-Solomona (Storm)
Jesse Bromwich (Storm)
Kenneath Bromwich (Storm)
Dylan Brown (Eels)
Erin Clark (Titans)
James Fisher-Harris (Panthers)
Kieran Foran (Sea Eagles)
Peta Hiku (Cowboys)
Jahrome Hughes (Storm)
Moses Leota (Panthers)
Isaac Liu (Titans)
Joseph Manu (Roosters)
Te Maire Martin (Broncos)
Ken Maumalo (Wests Tigers)
Ronaldo Mulitalo (Sharks)
Griffin Neame (Cowboys)
Briton Nikora (Sharks)
Marata Niukore (Eels)
Isaiah Papali’i (Eels)
Jordan Rapana (Raiders)
Jordan Riki (Broncos)
Brandon Smith (Storm)
Scott Sorensen (Panthers)
Joseph Tapine (Raiders)
Dallin Watene-Zelezniak (Warriors)

Tonga squad

Tolotau Koula (Sea Eagles)
Daniel Tupou (Roosters)
Siosifa Talakai (Sharks)
Mosese Suli (Dragons)
Sione Katoa (Sharks)
Kotoni Staggs (Broncos)
Talatau Amone (Dragons)
Siosiua Taukieaho (Roosters)
Siliva Havili (Rabbitohs)
Addin Fonua-Blake (Warriors)
Sitili Tupouniua (Roosters)
Keaon Koloamatangi (Rabbitohs)
Jason Taumalolo (Cowboys)
Soni Luke (Panthers)
Haumole Olakau’atu (Sea Eagles)
Tevita Pangai Jnr (Bulldogs)
Tevita Tatola (Rabbitohs)
Moeaki Fotuaika (Titans)
Will Penisini (Eels)
Isaiya Katoa (Panthers)
Andrew Fifita (Sharks)
Joe Ofahengaue (Wests Tigers)
Starford To’a (Wests Tigers)
Christian Tuipulotu (Sea Eagles)
Eliesa Katoa (Warriors)

Acknowledgement of Country

Gold Coast Titans proudly acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we are situated, the Kombumerri families of the Yugambeh Language Region. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging, and recognise their continuing connections to the lands, waters and their extended communities throughout South East Queensland.