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Wed 12 Dec 2018 | 09:12

Country of origin: Born in one, playing for another

Country of origin: Born in one, playing for another
Wed 12 Dec 2018 | 09:12
Country of origin: Born in one, playing for another

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: There is a belief that it is New Zealand who steals players galore from the (other) islands and that they wouldn’t be nearly as good otherwise.

We have looked at some of the players in squads during the November Tests. The lists may not be complete, but they give an indication of who the main recipients have been – and the main donors.

There are lots of names; errors and omissions are inevitable, but it will certainly give a rough idea.

We have included Canada, Hong Kong, Germany and Kenya as they played in World Cup qualifiers in November

An interesting exercise would be to formulate one’s preconceived ideas about who had the most “foreigners” and who donated the most players to other countries and where New Zealand stands on the list. And then look at the names and numbers below.

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Not Born in the Country Playing For

England – 10

Australia: Alec Hepburn
Fiji: Joe Cokanasiga
Hong Kong: Nathan Earle
New Zealand: Dylan Hartley, Ben Te’o, Brad Shields
Samoa: Manu Tuilagi
South Africa: Nick Schonert, Michael Rhodes,
USA: Sam Underhill

France – 5

Cameroon:  Dany Priso
Guinea-Bissau: Cedate Gomes,
New Caledonia: Sébastien Vahaamahina
New Zealand: Uini Atonio
South Africa: Bernard le Roux

Ireland 10

Canada: Luke McGrath
England: Kieran Marmion, Sam Arnold, Will Addison
New Zealand: Bundee Aki, Joey Carbery
Scotland: John Cooney
South Africa: CJ Stander, Quinn Roux
Spain: Jordi Murphy

Scotland 13

Australia: Ben Toolis, Sam Johnson
England: Alex Allan, Sam Skinner, Jamie Ritchie, Rob Harley, Ryan Wilson, Ali Price, Henry Pyrgos, Chris Harris, James Lang
Namibia: Byron McGuigan
New Zealand: Simon Berghan, Nick Grigg, Blade Thomson, Sean Maitland
South Africa: Allan Dell, WP Nel, David Denton, Josh Strauss
USA: Tommy Seymour

Wales 9

England: Tomas Francis, Jake Ball, Dan Lydiate, Ross Moriarty, Jonathan Davies, Jonah Holmes, George North
New Zealand: Gareth Anscombe, Hadleigh Parkes

Italy 10

England: Jake Polledri
Guinea: Cherif Traorè
Ireland: Ian McKinley
Scotland: George Biagi
New Zealand: Dean Budd, Jimmy Tuivaiti, Jayden Hayward
South Africa: Johan Meyer, Braam Steyn
Zimbabwe: Sebastian Negri

Australia 10

Tonga: Tolu Latu, Taniela Tupou
New Zealand: Jermaine Ainsley
Fiji: Isi Naisarani, Samu Kerevi, Marika Koroibete, Sefanaia Naivalu
Papua New Guinea: Will Genia
South Africa: Dane Haylett-Petty
Zimbabwe: David Pocock

New Zealand 4

Fiji: Waisake Naholo
Samoa: Nepo Laulala
Tonga: Ofa Tu’ungafasi, Vaea Fifita

Japan 11

Fiji: Samuela Anise
New Zealand: Michael Leitch, Hendrik Tui, Will Tupou, Lomano Lemeki
Samoa: Timothy Lafaele
South Africa: Wimpie van der Walt, Kotaro Matsushima
Tonga: Asaeli Ai Valu, Uwe Helu, Amanaki Lotoahea

USA 13

Australia: James Hilterbrand, Greg Peterson, Luke Hume
England: Will Hooley
Ireland: Dylan Fawsitt, Paul Mullen, John Quill
New Zealand: Tony Lamborn, Devereaux Ferris, Paul Lasike
South Africa: Hanco Germishuys, Ruben de Haas, Shaun Davies

Canada 4

England: Matt Evans
Hong Kong: Gordon McRorie
Ireland: Shane O’Leary
South Africa: DTH van der Merwe

Germany 15

Australia: Sean Armstrong
England: Anthony Dickinson, Pierre Mathurin
South Africa: Kurt Haupt, Mark Fairhurst, Wynston Cameron-Dow, Marcel Henn, Sebastian Ferreira, Jaco Otto, Ayron Schramm, Jarrid Els,
Raynor Parkinson, Nikolai Klewinghaus, Michael Poppmeier, Samy Füchsel, Julius Nostadt
New Zealand: Hagen Schulte
Wales: Oliver Paine
Zimbabwe: Marcel Coetzee

Hong Kong 17

Australia: Kane Boucaut
England: Ben Higgins, Conor Hartley, Ben Axten-Burrett, Lewis Warner
France: Thomas Lamboley
New Zealand: Nick Hewson, Ben Rimene, Casey Stone
South Africa: Grant Kemp, Liam Slatem, Dylan Rogers, Matt Rosslee, Toby Fenn
Wales: Bryn Phillips, Ben Roberts

Fiji – 3

Australia: Campese Ma’afu, Ben Volavola
England: Josh Matavesi

Samoa – 18

New Zealand: Motu Matu’u, Raymond Niuia, Manu Leiataua, Donald Brighouse, Paul also, Kane Leaupepe, Jack Lam, Ben Nee-Nee, Josh Tyrell, Brandon Nansen, Filo Paulo, Faifili Levave, Piula Fa’asalele, Pele Cowley, D’Angelo Leuila, Stacey Ili, Tim Nanai-Williams, Jamie-Jerry Taulagi

Tonga – 14

Australia: Steve Mafi
New Zealand: Paul Ngauamo, Paea Fa’anunu, Ben Tameifuna, Daniel Faleafa, Michael Faleafa, Valentino Mapapalangi, Ma’ama Vaipulu, Leon Fukofuka, Kurt Morath, Siale Piutau, Viliami Lolohea, Hawaii Ahokovi, Fotu Lokotui

Argentina – 0

Georgia – 0

Kenya – 0

South Africa – 0


New Zealand: 48
South Africa: 37
England: 20
Australia: 11
Tonga: 9
Fiji: 7
Wales: 3
Zimbabwe: 3
Hong Kong: 2
Ireland: 2
Samoa: 2
Scotland: 2
USA: 2
Cameroon: 1
Canada: 1
Guinea: 1
Guinea-Bissau: 1
Namibia: 1
New Caledonia: 1
Papua New Guinea: 1
Spain: 1

So there we have it. New Zealand gives the most of its natives to other countries’ national teams, of which Samoa is the main recipient.

That Samoa is the main beneficiary is not surprising. The population of Samoa is about 194 000. The people of Samoan heritage living in New Zealand number roughly 144 000. Auckland is the city with the biggest Samoan population some 95 000 while the population of Apia is around 36 000.

It is silly to see New Zealanders as only those descended from settlers who had come from the British Isles and Ireland. Their descendants are no different from the descendants of Pacific Islands, Polynesian or Melanesian.

One Samoan plays for New Zealand; 18 New Zealanders play for Samoa.

Three All Blacks were born in Tonga but 13 Tongan internationals were born in New Zealand.

Four countries on our list have received no foreigners while donating 37, all South Africans. Surprisingly no Georgians play for foreign lands though 22 of their 30 current squad members play abroad, 17 in France.

There are different reasons for the change of nationality – from migrating parents to seeking a chance to play international rugby that would not happen at home.

By Paul Dobson

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