The Samoa government says a team claiming to represent the country at the Tag Football World Cup are not recognised as flag bearers for Samoa.
The tournament gets underway in Coffs Harbour today, midway between Sydney and Brisbane.
In a letter to both the club and the International Tag Federation, Samoa Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi said "the only teams that can be flag carriers are those endorsed via selection as national representatives through Samoa Tag Incorporated", which is overseen by the Samoa Association of Sports and National Olympic Committee.
"How can this team talk of representing our country and your organisation endorse them, without actually receiving Samoa's blessing? - You cannot," he said.
In the letter, Tuilapea said Samoa Tag Incorporated tried to work through the issues with the club but there was a refusal to acknowledge Samoa's right to select its own national representative team.
"We now have calls from other local and overseas players and teams asking who the national selectors are - certainly not any of you," he said.
The Samoan team competing in the World Cup is affiliated with Samoa International Tag Federation Incorporated, which is not recognised by the Samoa Government.
"The offer from government to consider endorsement was still kept open if matters previously requested are finally and properly responded to, however, at this time, the government position has been made clear by the Prime Minister and the local governing body," Tuilaepa said.
President of Samoa Tag Incorporated, Fa'aofonu'u JP Leota, said the club was contacted 12 months ago and asked to take the steps required to become recognised as national representatives.
"We've been trying for a year now to work with these organisations, but they refuse to acknowledge the authority of Samoa as a country, to select its own national reps, and they ignore our efforts to promote the game of TAG for all Samoans, not just their organisation members," he said.
"It is having an effect on all our nationals around the world who want to be a part of a properly selected national team.
"In effect, we have tried as the national TAG body, to work with them and we have been ignored. They cannot therefore be endorsed as representing Samoa."