RECENT Glasgow Warriors signing Walter Fifita will get his first taste to playing rugby in Scotland on Saturday when he lines up for Tonga, directly opposite new club-mate Kyle Steyn, in the the opening match of this Autumn’s four-match Test series.
The giant winger, who signed for Danny Wilson’s squad earlier this month from New Zealand side North Harbour, has trained with his new team at Scotstoun but has yet to play for them.
Former Warriors back-row forward Fotu Lokotui is also in the tourists’ starting line-up for the match at BT Murrayfield. The 29-year-old made 13 appearances for the Scotstoun outfit last season before moving on to French club Agen during the summer.
In common with Scotland, the Tongan 23 includes eight players who will be winning their first caps. But while Gregor Townsend has named four debutants in his starting line-up with another four on the bench, the visitors’ split is six starting and two in reserve.
The half-dozen new caps who will start the match are: right-wing Atunaisa Manu, centre Vaea Vaea, loosehead prop Loni Uhila, hooker Maile Ngauamo, lock Setofano Funaki and blindside Tanginoa Halaifonua. Reserve tighthead Tomu Taufa and backs replacement Navarre Haisila are the two uncapped members of the bench.
Tonga (v Scotland at BT Murrayfield, Saturday 30th October @ 2.30pm): J Faiva; A Manu, M Hingano, V Vaea, W Fifita; K Morath, S Takulua (captain); L Uhila, M Ngauamo, D Lolohea, H Fifita, S Funaki, T Halaifonua, F Lokotui, V Mapapalangi. Substitutes: S Maile, J Felemi, T Taufa, D Faleafa, O Havili, M Kafatolu, A Halo, N Haisila.