Taumalolo picked for Tonga

North Queensland Toyota Cowboys lock Jason Taumalolo will lead a star-studded Tonga forward pack for their clash with arch-rivals Samoa in Sydney on Saturday night.

Taumalolo joins Cronulla giant Andrew Fifita, Roosters big man Sio Siua Taukeiaho and Manly young gun Addin Fonua-Blake to form a fearsome engine room for coach Kristian Woolf.

The Cowboys star last week declared his allegiance to Tonga and expressed his desire to help the tiny Pacific nation emerge as an international rugby league powerhouse on the back of a stellar World Cup campaign.

"Along with a number of other players, I have recommitted to Tonga again because we are all passionate about our heritage, but we also want to help make international rugby league stronger and the best way for us to do that is by making Tonga a competitive team internationally," Taumalolo said.

"The World Cup, I'd never been a part of something like that before, it was a really special experience."
Tonga have also named an exciting backline headlined by Bulldogs centre Will Hopoate, Eels flyer Michael Jennings, Wests Tigers back Tui Lolohea and Roosters winger Daniel Hopoate.

The Tonga and Samoa clash will be the second in a Pacific Test doubleheader with PNG and Fiji to also lock horns at Campbelltown Stadium.

The match kicks off at 7.10pm Saturday – tickets available at ticketek.com.au or catch the broadcast on Channel 9.

Mate Ma'a Tonga: Andrew Fifita (Sharks), Addin Fonua-Blake (Sea Eagles), Siliva Havili (Raiders), Ata Hingano (Raiders), Will Hopoate (Bulldogs), Konrad Hurrell (Titans), Michael Jennings (Eels), Robert Jennings (Rabbitohs), Sione Katoa (Panthers), Tuimoala Lolohea (Wests Tigers), Manu Ma'u (Eels), Joe Ofahengaue (Broncos), Junior Tatola (Rabbitohs), Jason Taumalolo (Cowboys), Siosiua Taukieaho (Roosters), Peni Terepo (Eels), Daniel Tupou (Roosters).