Two Canterbury Hockey reps have been included in the Blacksticks Women’s Hockey side as the National team looks towards next years Tokyo Olympic Games.
Olivia Merry will add to her 200 plus caps and will now get to play alongside returning Blacksticks Gemma McCaw and Kayla Whitelock, while HSOB/Burnside striker Rachel McCann has forced her way back into the side having been on the outer under former coach Mark Hager.
Head Coach Graham Shaw says he’d pretty upbeat anout having the services of Whitelock and McCaw, that along with the likes of Merry takes the side to six players with more than 200 caps, “We have been lucky to welcome back Kayla and Gemma after they stepped away to start families. We look forward to the invaluable experience that they will bring and the pivotal role they will play in helping our team towards our goal of medalling at the Olympic Games”.
Shaw stated on the benefit of the 2019 Season “The FIH Hockey Pro League and Oceania Cup have allowed us to test ourselves against the best opposition from around the world. Having booked our place at the Tokyo Olympics we have been able to plan for the year ahead, which will allow us to have the best shot possible to perform at the Olympic Games in 2020”.
The team will begin their international season on Saturday 1st of February when they host the Belgium Women in the FIH Hockey Pro League at the new National Hockey Centre in North Harbour before Tests across three weekends in Christchurch.
Vantage Black Sticks Men’s and Women’s Home Schedule
1st February vs Belgium Men and Women – *National Hockey Centre
2nd February vs Belgium Men and Women – * National Hockey Centre
8th February vs Great Britain Men and Women – * National Hockey Centre
9th February vs Great Britain Men and Women – * National Hockey Centre
15th February vs USA Women and Spain Men – Ngå Puna Wai
16th February vs USA Women and Spain Men – Ngå Puna Wai
28th February vs Argentina Men and Women – Ngå Puna Wai
1st March vs Argentina Men and Women – Ngå Puna Wai
Vantage Black Sticks Men’s and Women’s Away Schedule
19th March vs Netherlands Women
20th March vs Netherlands Men
22nd March vs Netherlands Men and Women
28th March vs Germany Men and Women
29th Match vs Germany Men and Women
16th May vs Australia Men and Women
17th May vs Australia Men and Women
23rd May vs India Men and China Women
24th May vs India Men and China Women