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Tonga in quit threat after political involvement
London
October 15, 1999

A Tongan radio station has reported that the Tonga World Cup side threatened to quit after the country's Police Minister Clive Edwards influenced team selection.
The station claimed that Tongan coach Dave Waterston was about to quit after Edwards changed the line-up for last weeks Italy game. The side backed Waterston and also threatened to walk-out before Edwards relented.
Edwards claimed that he became involved in the selection of the side against Italy and for Friday's game against England because players he believed were injured had been put in the team.
Edwards, a former Auckland lawyer, has long been a controversial figure in Tonga. Appointed to his ministerial post for life by King Taufaahau Tupou IV he is also president of the Tonga Rugby Union which has been in turmoil for years and is virtually bankrupt.
Edwards took control of the union earlier this year before Waterston, had arrived. He then refused to accept the named squad and insisted on new trials.

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