AUCKLAND, 23 NOVEMBER 2015 (TVNZ) ----The chairman and president of Tonga Rugby Union has resigned following Ikale Tonga's dismal performance at the World Cup and is laying the blame at World Rugby's door.
Speaking exclusively to One News Epi Taione said he had resigned but will still remain involved at some level.
Tonga lost every game but one at the World Cup in England, including a 47-9 loss to the All Blacks.
But Taione says it's no wonder the team didn't do well given the way World Rugby distributes funding.
He says it's a ludicrous situation as Tier One teams just keep getting better as they play each other 15-16 times a year at the highest level whereas Tonga only gets two-three Tier One Tests.
"It's just bloody pathetic to be honest," Taione said of the funding.
"All this talking about the money they made in the last world cup we don't see any of that and it's just how they run the things, it's just killing rugby."
One News understands that a proposal is with the Tonga Rugby board for the Prime Minister to take on the role of president - a similar structure to the Samoa Rugby Union.....PACNEWS