Samoan players received no match payments for their game against Tonga

Samoa Rugby League coach Matt Parish has criticised those in charge of international rugby league at the NRL, calling them "weak".


This follows revelations the Samoan players received no match payments for their game against Tonga at Pirtek Stadium in Paramatta, Sydney, on Saturday 7 May.
 

Toa Samoa came away with the victory 18-6.
 

The Tongan side received $500 each in match payments, but only after sourcing their own sponsorship. Meanwhile, players from the Australian Kangaroos, NZ Kiwis, and Australian City and Country Rep sides all received match payments from the NRL.
 

Parish calls this a blight on the game and says someone needs to stand up for the Pacific nations.
 

"No one gets looked after in the Pacific Tests and it's unfair," Parish told The Daily Telegraph.
 

"The NRL pays money for the City and Country, the Kangaroos and the Kiwis players to be paid, but the Pacific nations as with a lot of things seem to get overlooked.
 

“The people in charge of the Pacific nations that work for the NRL are all weak.”
 

Parish went on to say they make rules up as they go and that until someone’s willing to stand up for the Pacific nations "we are always going to have this problem".
 

Australia and New Zealand receive about $180,000 each to fund the mid-season Test, whereas the Pacific Nations share about $350,000 between the Fiji, Samoa, Tonga and PNG teams.
 

This means each nation has roughly $87,000 each to cover all costs.
 

On top of this, coaches don't get paid for their services. Parish would like to see that change for the growth of the global game.
 

Tongan counterpart Kristian Woolf shares this opinion, saying that the Pacific players would play for free but this doesn’t make it fair.
 

"Whatever we are able to get we make sure we give the players as much reward as we can," Woolf said.
 

Parish believes the NRL doesn't want Pacific nations like Samoa and Tonga to be too strong because it hurts the bigger countries.
 

"They don't want us to beat Australia and New Zealand,” he fired, “because if that happens people will lose jobs.”
 

ARLC Chairman John Grant was asked on Saturday if the NRL would consider paying players' match fees for other countries to discourage them from switching nations for money.
 

"We do that for New Zealand," Grant said.
 

"Without trying to commit ourselves in any sense, we have to try and make that [player's call] a neutral decision. Frankly, there's a fair bit of money involved for that to happen.
 

 

S.N-16