‘All Blacks rob Pacific Islands’
- 13 Sep 2017
New Zealand Herald rugby writer Chris Rattue says Vaea Fifita's selection proves the All Blacks do raid the Pacific Islands for players.
The 25-year-old flank produced an outstanding performance for the All Blacks against Argentina last Saturday in his first Test start.
Fifita was born and raised in Tonga. He attended Tonga College and toured New Zealand with Tonga Schools, which is when he was spotted by Tamaki College, who offered him a rugby scholarship.
He attended Murray Mexted's academy in New Zealand and went on to play for Wellington and the Hurricanes, before making his All Blacks debut off the bench against Samoa in June.
However, there are many who believe Fifita should be playing for Tonga and not New Zealand.
'Should he really be playing for the All Blacks at all?' asked Rattue in a column for the New Zealand Herald. 'Or is New Zealand rugby using its money and power to unfairly raid small neighbours?
'Look, I'm glad – make that very excited – that Fifita is in the All Blacks, from a parochial point of view, and no doubt he is as well. We are going to see something very special.
'But I'm also torn, uneasy. Fifita is a Tongan who came to this country, at an advanced age, for no other reason than rugby. If World Rugby was serious about real world rugby Fifita would be playing for Tonga.'
Photo: Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images
Tour Tales – Dublin
JON CARDINELLI on the buzz around the World Cup bid, the vibe at the Aviva Stadium, and sprinting tightheads.
Louw’s committed to Bok cause
Francois Louw returned to the Springboks in a time of need, and has added leadership and experience to a team in transition, writes CRAIG LEWIS.
‘Boks not in position to get big score’
What NICK MALLETT had to say on SuperSport about the Springboks' 18-17 win over France in Paris.