Sunday, September 26, 2010

Chile host Tonga


Chile is to host Tonga in what is the biggest international rugby match in Chile since hosting Fiji in 2003 as Tonga take on Los Condores in at the Estadio Atlético de San Carlos de Apoquindo in Santiago this Wedensday (September 29). Tonga are ranked 16th in the World according to the current IRB World Rankings and are considered to be a good enough opponent for the All Blacks to play against them in the match to open Rugby World Cup 2011 at Eden Park in New Zealand.

Chile, on the other hand, are ranked 24th in the World and have never qualified for a Rugby World Cup but came close in qualifying for Rubgy World Cup 2003 when they defeated Uruguay 10-6 and the USA 21-13 but ultimately fall short vs Canada and in their away matches vs Uruguay and the USA. The win vs the USA is tragicaly the only match ever played between the two countries in Chile.

Tonga have been to every Rugby World Cup except for 1991 when Samoa qualified ahead of them. With Fiji then missing out on qualification for 1995 the IRB were forced to rethink the structure of the tournament and expanded from 16 to 20 teams for Rugby World Cup 1999. At France 2007, Tonga defeated Samoa and the United States in pool matches and pushed both South Africa and England to the limit to finish third in the pool and automatically qualify for New Zealand 2011.

The Tongan team is to arrive in Chile today (Sunday Setember 16)and being training for the test match tommorrow. After facing Chile, Tonga will travel to Cordoba, Argentina to take plart in the 2010 Americas Rugby Championship.

The Federation of Chilean Rugby have announced proces for the match on their website and they can be purchased through ticketmaster. Tickets are $3500 pesos. For further information contact prensa@feruchi.cl

With thanks www.www.feruchi.cl 



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