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Cyclone squad for 2019 confirmed

Cyclone squad for 2019 confirmed

Selica Winiata has been confirmed as captain of the Manawatu Cyclones for their 2019 Farah Palmer Cup campaign.

The star fullback was announced in the role by coach Fusi Feaunati and new assistant coach Caleb Agnew-Jones at the Cyclones squad announcement on Tuesday.

The vice-captain is former Black Fern Sosoli Talawadua who played for Waikato last season.

“They are two ladies with high levels of experience having played in the Black Ferns for a number of years, but also ladies who also have a lot of experience on the playing field,” he said.

“What we also like is there is a good balance of leadership with Selica and Sos around their dynamics as a group.””

The returns of former Black Fern Janna Vaughan and New Zealand Sevens development player Crystal Mayes have added significant depth to the team’s backline.

Feaunati also named five young players - Laura Claridge, Jasmine O-Connell, Izzy Rewiri, Yuki Sue, Chloe Henderson – in a cadetship programme to work alongside the main squad.

“We really think they will benefit from being exposed to and train with the full squad,” he said.

The 2019 campaign has been themed “Write the Future” following on from their “Rise Up” campaign in 2018 where they beat Auckland for the first time and made the semi-finals of the Farah Palmer Cup.

“What the ladies have done is have a good discussion about what rugby here in Manawatu is all about, where it has been and where it currently is, more around giving them some focus of where it needs to be heading in the future. Their theme is ‘Write the Future’ which is all about laying the foundations for the generations to follow.”

Talawadua will help strengthen the front-row along with the returning Nicci Kuiti.

The Cyclones look set for a young second row with talented sevens exponent Kahurangi Sturmey joining Jessica Fagan-Pease, Ashleigh Knight and Mahalia Polson.

Hard working flanker Sam Tipene will lead the loose forwards, while Nicola Chase has transferred to the side of the scrum having made her debut on the wing last year.

The backs have plenty of experience with former Black Ferns halfback Kristina Sue along with the likes of Winiata, Mayes, Vaughan and Lauren Balsillie.

Kalyn Takitimu-Cook and Carys Dallinger will be worth keeping an eye on after impressive debut seasons last year.

The Cyclones campaign kicks off on September 6 against Counties Manukau in Pukekohe – one of four games which will be televised on Sky TV.

Their first home game is against Waikato on September 14 against Waikato at 1pm at Central Energy Trust Arena.

There is one player to be added to the Cyclones squad.

 

* All players are asked to assemble at the Rugby Performance Centre at 5.30pm Tuesday for photos. Please make sure to bring clean boots. You will also need a notebook and pen. Please contact Warren Stent 0272305000 if you have any questions.

Manawatu Cyclones:

The team has

Nicci Kuiti                            Kia Toa

Marilyn Live                        Kia Toa

Sequita Hemingway        Kia Toa

Sosoli Talawadua              Massey

Khali Tipene                       Kia Toa

Jayme Nuku                       Kia Toa

Jessica Fagan-Pease        Kia Toa

Kahurangi Sturmey         Massey

Ashleigh Knight                 FOBO

Mahalia Polson                 Kia Toa

Ngano Tavake                    Massey

Sam Olsen                           FOBO

Sam Tipene                        Kia Toa

Layla Sae                             Massey

Tiana Davison                    Kia Toa

Nicola Chase                      FOBO

Kaipo Olsen-Baker           FOBO

Lucy Brown                         FOBO

Kristina Sue                        FOBO

Corrineke Windle             FOBO

Carys Dallinger                  Kia Toa

Shanna Porima                  Kia Toa

Janna Vaughan                    Kia Toa

Maggie Leota                     Kia Toa

Lauren Balsillie                   FOBO

Kalyn Takitimu-Cook       FOBO

Rangi-Marie Sturmey     Massey

Selica Winiata                    Kia Toa

Crystal Mayes                    Kia Toa