26 May 2012

Black Sticks women named for Asia Tour

12:23 pm on 26 May 2012

The New Zealand women's hockey team has been named for their Asia tour, a step closer towards Olympic selection.

The Black Sticks will be playing matches against China and Korea from May 29th to June 7th.

The coach Mark Hager has named a touring group of 20, electing to take two more athletes than the usual 18 to provide more opportunity for athletes to push for Olympic selection.

Hager says it's another opportunity to play two more top eight teams and will assist in determining the final selection of the 16 players for London.

Auckland's Lucy Talbot fractured her thumb and is therefore unavailable but she'll be reassessed later and still considered for final selection.

Young players of note who have made the team of 20 are Rhiannon Dennison, Julia King, Samantha Charlton, and Bridget Blackwood.

The Black Sticks will return home on June 9th, just prior to the Olympic team being announced.