Three players from the Counties Energy Heat have been named in the Black Ferns squad for the upcoming Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.
Halfback Arihiana Marino-Tauhinu, first-five Hazel Tubic and winger Ruby Tui have all had their place in the 32-strong squad confirmed when it was announced by New Zealand Rugby Deputy Chair and Rugby World Cup winner Dr Farah Palmer at College Rifles Rugby Club on Tuesday.
The three players have been involved in the Black Ferns matches leading into the World Cup so their selection comes as no surprise.
Tubic has played 16 tests for the Black Ferns and is the most experienced of the trio while Marino-Tauhinu has played nine tests and Tui four.
Black Ferns Director of Rugby Wayne Smith, who will attend his first women’s Rugby World Cup, but fifth overall, congratulated those selected.
“This is an incredibly special moment for the players selected and on behalf of the coaching group I want to congratulate all those named in today’s squad, it’s an exciting time not only for them but their whānau and wider communities as well,” said Smith.
“It’s also important to make note of those players that missed out. This selection process has been incredibly difficult as the standard of players we have seen across the country this year has been impressive.
“There are a number of players who have had long, distinguished careers in the black jersey and their contribution to this team has been crucial in getting the team to where it is today. And we know as with any campaign of this length, we may still see some of them called into the squad,” said Smith.
The Black Ferns squad will assemble in Auckland on Monday in advance of their first ever Test match against Japan at Eden Park. They will stay assembled through to the start of the Rugby World Cup which kicks off at Eden Park on 8 October.
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