Our News

Woolf unsure over Tonga future

08 Nov 23, 8:30AM 0 Comments

Written by John Davidson

Kristian Woolf is considering his future as head coach of the Tongan national team.

The Mate Ma’a went down 3-0 in a Test series with England.

Woolf has been in charge of Tonga since 2014 and would be one of, if not, the longest-serving coaches in international rugby league.

He led the Pacific nation to the semi-finals of the 2017 World Cup and in history-making defeats of Great Britain and Australia in 2017.

But he will take over as head of NRL side the Dolphins at the end of 2024 and is unsure if he will stay on longer with Tonga.

“I’ve got to wait and see,” he said.

“There’s a lot of things to consider there. Have I got the passion? Yeah I have.

“It took us a long time to get to 2017 [World Cup]. In 2017, 2018 and 2019 we had a really stable group. A hardened, experienced group that was very stable.

“Covid hurt us a bit. The three-year break and a few of our stalwarts at that age became a bit older and a new group came in.

“But if every group is going to be as good as we’ve had on this tour, then you enjoy it, you want to be a part of it.

“I’ve loved everything about this tour, I’ve loved everything about this group and it makes you want to be involved again.

“I’ve definitely still got the passion. In 12 months time I’ll be coaching in the NRL and I’ve got to figure out and see where it fits.

“There’s a lot of things that depend on as well – what the calendar actually looks like and what games are scheduled are a big part of it.”

Woolf praised England and the commitment of his men following the third Test.

“Full credit to England,” the Australian said.

“We’re disappointed with the results, we’re disappointed to go down 3-0, there’s no doubt about that.

“But one thing I’m not disappointed with is the way our men have come over here, the way we’ve prepared.

“Every training session, including this week, they’ve been outstanding. We’ve not been here on holidays.

“They’ve tried their absolute hardest to prepare well and I think they’ve put that type of effort into every game. I’m very proud of them as a group of men.”

Be the first to comment on this article

Make a comment...

Our Valued Partners

European Championship logo X-league rugby league logo Cleveland Rugby League Brasil Rugby League Latin Heat Rugby League Logo Ghana Rugby League Serbia Rugby League Canada Rugby League Norway Rugby League Russian Rugby League Cameroon Rugby League Malta Rugby League Nigeria Rugby League Logo