10 Nov 2018

Sport: 'Ikale Tahi looking to maintain momentum

3:50 pm on 10 November 2018

Tonga are looking to build on their recent strong form during this month's Northern Rugby Tour.

'Ikale Tahi captain Siale Piutau.

'Ikale Tahi captain Siale Piutau. Photo: RNZ Pacific/Vinnie Wylie

The Kingdom open their campaign against a French Barbarians team in Bordeaux, before tests against Wales and Georgia.

The 'Ikale Tahi ended the June window with back-to-back wins over Samoa and Fiji.

Captain Siale Pitau said they want to build on that momentum.

"There was a lot of hard work put in the couple of tours ... so I think we're just trying to build obviously our way into the World Cup, we're just trying to build on all these performances that we've been putting through," he said.

"With the coaching staff that we've got and being able to keep them all together I think we've been able to build on that momentum as a team and for us players we're just trying to focus on what we can do and how we can get better - not only individually but as a team we've been trying to grow our team culture along the way."

Despite now knowing too much about the French Barbarians, Piatau said they won't be treating their opponents lightly.

"We do know that it's obviously going to be a young promising team that (is made up of) guys that have just missed out on the French team, so we're expecting them obviously to play what a typical Baabaas team will play - just razzle-dazzle and throw the ball around - so what we're doing is trying to focusing on what we can do and prep well for this weekend's game.

"I think every time we put on that red jersey it's always going to be a test."