Eight new players have been named in the 2013 Black Sticks Women’s National Squad, with all debutants likely to get a run during the upcoming six-test series against India.
Five of the eight new players are from Canterbury and all were in the team that won this year’s Ford National Hockey League title. Black Sticks Women’s head coach, Mark Hager, says it is promising to see the talent that is being developed from the region.
“We have been closely following the progress of all these young players – they have been part of the Future Black Sticks Programme and performing well at national tournaments. They have matured a lot as athletes, and we believe they are ready to take the step up,” says head coach Mark Hager.
The eight new players are Michaela Curtis, Sian Fremaux, Pippa Hayward, Rose Keddell, Olivia Merry, Cassandra Reid, Aniwaka Roberts and Jenny Storey.
Craighead Diocesan Year 13 student, Cassandra Reid from Timaru, was one of the debutants to see her name on the list when Hager sent the email, and she admits it came as a pretty big surprise.
“I had a feeling I might make it into the Junior Black Sticks, but didn’t realise I would get as far as the National Squad. It is pretty exciting – I can’t quite believe it,” says Reid.
Eleven of the sixteen players who represented New Zealand at this year’s Olympics, including Gemma Flynn, Katie Glynn, Stacey Michelsen and Anita Punt, have all been renamed in the squad. The other five have made themselves unavailable for 2013.
The exception is Samantha Harrison who has been omitted from the National Squad and will be part of the Development Squad in 2013.
With Kayla Sharland, Krystal Forgesson, Bianca Russell and Emily Naylor on extended leave till early 2013, the upcoming home test series will allow Hager to rotate the new players.
The team will come together on the 3 December in Hawke’s Bay for a week’s training camp before they play their first test.
The first two games are in Napier (8-9 Dec), then they play at Palmerston North (11-12 Dec) before going to Wellington (14-15 Dec) for the final weekend. Tickets can be purchased at www.iticket.co.nz
2013 Black Sticks Women’s National Squad
Bridget Blackwood (Canterbury) 17 caps
Sam Charlton (Midlands) 36
Michaela Curtis (Central) 0
Sophie Devine (Canterbury) 36
Gemma Flynn (Midlands) 119
Krystal Forgesson (Auckland) 168
Sian Fremaux (Canterbury) 0
Amelia Gibson (Canterbury) 11
Katie Glynn (Auckland) 93
Ella Gunson (Northland) 84
Charlotte Harrison (Northland) 163
Pippa Hayward (Canterbury) 0
Rose Keddell (Auckland) 0
Julia King (Auckland) 23
Olivia Merry (Canterbury) 0
Stacey Michelsen (Northland) 109
Emily Naylor (Central) 203
Anita Punt (Capital) 103
Cassandra Reid (Canterbury) 0
Aniwaka Roberts (Capital) 0
Bianca Russell (North Harbour) 48
Sally Rutherford (Midlands) 32
Kayla Sharland (Central) 176
Jenny Storey (Canterbury) 0
Petrea Webster (North Harbour) 18
Hockey New Zealand Media release
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