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Last Updated: Thursday, 27 September 2007, 18:44 GMT 19:44 UK
Tongans told to ditch green hair
Tonga outside centre Sukanaivalu Hufanga.
Sukanaivalu Hufanga sports green-tinged hair in Paris
A publicity stunt planned by Tonga's players for their World Cup match against England will not now go ahead.

The Tongans had been set to take to the field in Paris with their hair dyed green to thank an Irish bookmaker for supporting them financially in France.

But governing body the IRB says that would constitute advertising and has ordered Tonga not to go ahead.

"I just do not get the ruling," said captain Nili Latu, whose team are among world rugby's poor relations.

Ahead of the tournament, centre Epeli Taione raised eyebrows when he adopted the name of the bookmaker.

Organisers refused to amend his entry in the tournament guide.

If Tonga beat England, they will secure a World Cup quarter-final place for the first time, sending the Webb Ellis Trophy holders home.

When asked about Tonga's planned green hair stunt England head coach Brian Ashton said: "They can do what they want as far as I'm concerned."

He added jokingly: "The only disappointment is that I was thinking of doing the same thing and they've stolen my thunder. I'd have to find some hair first..."



SEE ALSO
Green the colour for team Tonga
27 Sep 07 |  Northern Ireland
Rugby union positions guide
05 Feb 07 |  Laws & Equipment


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