Counties Manukau Heat stars Hazel Tubic and Arihiana Marino-Tauhinu have secured spots in the first batch of full-time women’s contracted players announced by New Zealand Rugby today.
Building on the professional performance contracts introduced in 2018, the new contracting model confirms Black Ferns players will have a guaranteed increase to their retainer along with assembly fees and a range of other benefits.
For Tubic and Marino-Tauhinu it represents a key change that will allow them to focus fulltime on their rugby while not having to worry about supplementing income elsewhere to pay the bills.
Counties Manukau Rugby Women’s High Performance & Pathways Manager Pete Shaw was rapt with the move.
“Both Hazel and Ari are terrific role models for aspiring players in our region and thoroughly deserve to be afforded this opportunity,” Shaw said.
“We are so proud of them and wish them well in what is a massive year for the women’s game.”
New Zealand Rugby CEO Mark Robinson congratulated those players named in the contracted group.
“2022 is a blockbuster year for women’s rugby and knowing that our leading players will be able to give their all to training and development was absolutely a necessary step to take.
“For a number of these players it has been a long time coming and we look forward to seeing what they can achieve now they can focus on rugby.”
Contracted players will train out on regionalised hubs in Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Wellington and Christchurch, receiving technical, tactical and strength and conditioning programmes.
One day a week is committed to Personal Development with players focusing on the areas of career/education and work, finance and asset protection, character development, mental wellness and other professional rugby obligations and expectations.
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