Seven years away from the international scene, veteran defender Aniwaka Haumaha has been called up for New Zealand’s Women’s World Cup squad next month.
Haumaha (née Roberts) was recalled to the Black Sticks team for the recent series against Australia.
And the 33-year-old has kept her place in the side for the World Cup to be played in the Netherlands and Spain in July, with the Commonwealth Games following soon afterwards for the defending champions.
Haumaha was unavailable for training camps earlier this year due to her wedding but will now get the opportunity to add to her 71 caps in the 20-strong squad.
Black Sticks women take on England, India, and China in the group stages. The team will play three matches against Spain and one each against the Netherlands and Chile in the lead up to the tournament.
“This is an exciting time for our women’s programme with quite a young team – it’ll be fantastic to give these players an early opportunity to test themselves at a pinnacle event against the best in the world,” said interim head coach Darren Smith.
“There will be some real tests, but I have a lot of belief in our young group to give some cracking performances and stamp their mark at international level. This is where heroes are made and I’m sure all of New Zealand will be right behind them.
Irishman Graham Shaw quit as head coach in April.
Black Sticks women’s squad
Kaitlin Cotter, Anna Crowley, Tarryn Davey, Frances Davies, Stephanie Dickins, Katie Doar, Aniwaka Haumaha, Megan Hull, , Alia Jaques, Tessa Jopp, Tyler Lench, Alex Lukin, Olivia Merry, Grace O’Hanlon, Hope Ralph, Brooke Roberts, Olivia Shannon, Rose Tynan. Travelling reserves: Madi Doar, Ella Hyatt-Brown.