Taumalolo to play Kangaroos

North Queensland Toyota Cowboy of the Year and Dally M Lock of the Year Jason Taumalolo will return for Mate Ma'a Tonga for their historic end-of-season Test match against the Kangaroos.

Head coach Kristian Woolf today selected a squad of 19 to contest the country's first-ever game against Australia, and added two development players to take part in the camp preparation.

The Mate Ma'a Tonga will play the world champions in a Test at Auckland's Mount Smart Stadium on Saturday 20 October.

In positive news for Tonga, experienced leader Sika Manu has been cleared of serious knee damage to lead the team into battle.

The majority of the squad named today were also part of last year's exciting run to the World Cup semi-finals.

Only Manly forward Addin Fonua-Blake and development players Robert Jennings (Rabbitohs) and Leivaha Pulu (Warriors) were not in the squad that fell just short of meeting the Kangaroos in the 2017 World Cup Final.

Woolf said he was excited at the squad Tonga had assembled, especially with the injection of the experienced Manu.

"To be able to have Sika Manu in as a leader for this squad is a big plus," said Woolf.

"This group has shown a commitment to their country of heritage and we are pleased with the calibre of the squad we have been able to name.

"We realise there is a huge challenge ahead of us in playing the current World Cup holders, so we are extending every resource we can to give this challenge our absolute best effort."

The Tonga squad will travel to New Zealand next week for a pre-match camp in Hamilton before establishing themselves in Auckland in the week of the Test.

MATE MA'A TONGA SQUAD

AUSTRALIA v TONGA Test match
Saturday 20 October - Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland

Andrew Fifita (Sharks)
Addin Fonua-Blake (Sea Eagles)
David Fusitu'a (Warriors)
Siliva Havilli (Raiders)
Ata Hingano (Raiders)
Will Hopoate (Bulldogs)
Konileti Hurrell (Titans)
Michael Jennings (Eels)
Solomone Kata (Warriors)
Sione Katoa (Panthers)
Tuimoala Lolohea (Tigers)
Sika Manu (Hull FC)
Ben Murdoch-Masilla (Warrington Wolves)
Joe Ofahengaue (Broncos)
Tevita Pangai Junior (Broncos)
Jason Taumalolo (Cowboys)
Sio Siua Taukeiaho (Roosters)
Peni Terepo (Eels)
Daniel Tupou (Roosters)

Coach: Kristian Woolf

Development players: Robert Jennings (Rabbitohs), Leivaha Pulu (Warriors)