The new New Zealand Women’s Coach, Mark Hager has sprung a few surprises in a group of 31 players who will trial in late May. The group will be trimmed to 24 at the completion of the trials and become the official 2022 Black Sticks Women’s Squad.
Hockey NZ has also accepted an invite for the women to play in a four nation’s tournament in India in late April – a team will be named next week from players within the trial group.
There are a number of new players included in the trial group including Anita Punt, Kate Savory and Anna Thorpe. A number of players will get the chance to resurrect their international careers under Hager including Honor Dillon, Liz Perry and Kate Mahon and Clarissa Eshuis.
A number of Beijing Black Sticks have opted out of international hockey this year – most notably 2008 captain Lizzy Igasan, who is currently unavailable but expected to make a return at some stage.
Players not considered for trials were Tara Drysdale, Jo Galletly, Anita Wawatai, Meredith Orr and Lizzy Igasan (taking time out) plus Jaimee Claxton (having a baby) and Caryn Paiwai (retired)
The 31 trialists are: Anna Thorpe, Charlotte Harrison, Jasmin McQuinn, Bianca Russel, Kate Savory, Stacey Michelsen, Amanda Green, Rhianna Buchanan, Alana Millington, Bridget Kight, Lucy Talbot, Stacey Brannigan, Ella Gunson, Katie Glynn, Kim Noakes, Honor Dillon, Krystal Forgesson, Cathryn Finlayson, Kate Mahon, Kim Green, Gemma Flynn, Clarissa Eshuis, Emily Naylor, Kayla Sharland, Sheree Horvath, Piki Hamahona, Beth Jurgeliet, Anita Punt, Kate Saunders, Stacey Carr, Liz Perry.
Source: Hockey New Zealand