Great development for international league, hopefully it could become an annual game eventually. Lot of Tongans playing union in the US, get them all over to league and it will grow much more quickly.The American National Rugby League international program shifts up a gear in May when the USA Tomahawks take on the Tonga Mate Ma'a in Honolulu in the 'Ohana Cup, which will be a perpetual trophy and symbol to commemorate competition between the USA Tomahawks and Pacific Nations. As part of Hawaiian culture, 'Ohana means family, and given the large Polynesian communities in the Hawaiian Islands, and the close proximity to a number of rugby league nations in the pacific region, it is a fitting name to launch many future international matches.
The 'Ohana Cup will be a tough challenge for the USA Tomahawks that will feature players based locally in America that will include a number of debutants that the coaching staff are keen to evaluate. The Tomahawks, currently ranked 11th in the world, will come into the match as underdogs against the 9th ranked Tongans.
Both teams view the match as a critical part of their 2013 Rugby League World Cup preparations. The Tongans are in Group C with Scotland and Italy, while the USA are in Group D with Wales and the Cook Islands.
Game day plans are being developed with the Hawaii Rugby Union and a big crowd is expected to turnout for a full day of rugby and entertainment to support both teams.
'Ohana Cup - Saturday, May 12 at 7pm