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Shalom Suniula gets the start at flyhalf

Mike Tolkin has made six changes to his starting lineup ahead of Saturday's match with Tonga at Kingsholm Stadium in Gloucester, England. Out from the Romania win are Olive Kilifi, Tai Tuisamoa, Lou Stanfill, Todd Clever, Adam Siddall and Taku Ngwenya. In for them are Mate Moeakiola, John Cullen, Greg Peterson, Scott Lavalla, Shalom Suniula and Tim Maupin, respectively. 

The second row combination is very green, as Cullen and Peterson are both earning just their second caps and first starts. The bench is thin there, too, as Tuisamoa is the only true lock in the reserve pool. Clever and Kyle Sumsion, who are on the bench, can fill in at lock, too, as can Lavalla, who is captaining the side in the No. 6 jersey, and No. 8 Matt Trouville. 

The scrumhalf, flyhalf and fullback positions are thin, too. If starting scrumhalf Mike Petri should go down, Suniula would presumably slide in from flyhalf. And if Suniula were injured, Folau Niua, who is starting at fullback, would presumably move to stand off. It's unclear who would slide over to cover fullback in that instance, however, as there are no fullbacks or halfbacks on the bench.

Thretton Palamo, who was unavailable for the Romania clash, is on the bench. He made his debut for Saracens last week in their Anglo-Welsh Cup match. Palamo is the lone Premiership Eagle at Tolkin's disposal for this tour. 

Ronald McLean is a completely new name to the Eagles setup, and he's on the bench. The center was born in Los Angeles but grew up in the UK. He is currently with the Ealing Trailfinders in the Greene King IPA Championship, which is one level below the Premiership. 

Starting at lock for Tonga is Joe Tui'neau, who has American ties. Born in Fiji, he moved to Auckland, New Zealand as a boy before playing college football for FCS Southeast Missouri State as a tight end.    

Kickoff is set for 11:45 a.m. ET, with a live stream available from

Men's Eagles | v Tonga 
1. Nick Wallace 
2. Phil Thiel 
3. Mate Moeakiola 
4. John Cullen 
5. Greg Peterson 
6. Scott LaValla (C) 
7. John Quill 
8. Matt Trouville 
9. Mike Petri 
10. Shalom Suniula 
11. Tim Stanfill 
12. Andrew Suniula 
13. Seamus Kelly 
14. Tim Maupin 
15. Folau Niua

Men's Eagles | Reserves 
16. Tom Coolican 
17. Angus Maclellan 
18. Benjamin Tarr 
19. Tai Tuisamoa 
20. Kyle Sumsion 
21. Todd Clever 
22. Thretton Palamo 
23. Ronald McLean

Tonga | Starting XV 
1. Tevita Mailau 
2. Aleki Lutui 
3. Paea Fa'anunu 
4. Tukulua Lokotui 
5. Joe Tu'ineau 
6. Sione Kalamafoni 
7. Nili Latu (C) 
8. Viliami Ma'afu 
9. Sonatane Takulua 
10. Kurt Morath 
11. Fetu'u Vainikolo 
12. Hermani Paea 
13. Siale Piutau 
14. David Halaifonua 
15. Vungakoto Lilo

Tonga | Reserves 
16. Elvis Taione 
17. Sione Lea 
18. Sila Puafisi 
19. Lisiate Fa'aoso 
20. Hale T Pole 
21. Taniula Moa 
22. Latiume Fosita 
23. Otulea Katoa


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