Sima makes her international debut2 min readReading Time: 2 minutes
Former Onehunga High School student, Sima Hala, was proud to make her international rugby debut for Tonga at the 2022 Oceania Rugby Women’s Championships in July. The announcement was a celebrated event for the Hala family, as older brother Kali Hala has also donned the red jersey for the Tonga National Rugby Union Team.
The 30 year-old’s love for the game began at high school, but it was her time at College Rifles which honed her skills on the field and set her apart from the rest. She credits her coaches and mentors, Doris Taufateau and Tevita Tu’ifua, for their guidance over the years and helping her develop into the player she is today.
“College Rifles has a lot of influential female rugby players, past and present, who continue to support women’s rugby at the club. Doris is the reason why I returned to the sport, and I will forever be thankful. I wouldn’t have made it this far in this sport without her because she gives so much to the game and to our nation – she is the GOAT!,” she says.
“Coach Ti also believed in me, and pushed me way out of my comfort zone. He gave me the courage to play a new position in an Auckland championship final. We had won every game that year and went on to win the Coleman Shield.“
Debuting for her small nation has been one of her greatest achievements on the field, but it is her role as mother to baby daughter Cora of which she is the most proud.
“Returning to play rugby as a new mum has 100% changed me in the best way possible. Qualifying for the Tonga team and having to be away from my baby was hard, but I was lucky to be able to spend time with her on my days off. It motivated me to train and play harder – knowing that I had my little girl on the sideline watching me.“
Sima looks forward to training hard during the off-season and giving it her all again when the rugby season commences. She is excited to see what the future will bring.
Sima Hala at Tonga jersey presentation with professional rugby player, Sekope Kepu (photo supplied)