Head coach Ricky Henry has named a new-look Kiwi Ferns squad, featuring a potential 11 debutantes, to challenge Australia and Tonga in the upcoming Pacific Championships.
New faces include NRLW Dally M rookie of the year winner Annessa Biddle, who impressed in her first season with the Sharks and Olympic gold medallist and dual code star Tyla Nathan-Wong, who played her first season in the NRLW with the Dragons this year.
Biddle named NRLW rookie of the year
Brisbane forward Jasmine Fogavini and Amelia Pasikala from the Roosters are new additions to the forward pack, while Canberra duo Ashleigh Quinlan and Cheyelle Robins-Reti will also be a chance of making their international debuts.
While there have been a number of changes made to the squad that last faced Australia in the Rugby League World Cup final loss last year, experienced campaigners including Golden Boot winner Raecene McGregor, Titans captain Georgia Hale, Apii Nicholls and Mya Hill-Moana return to the squad, as well as powerhouse Brisbane and Dally M Centre of the Year Mele Hufanga, who lit up the World Cup with her performance for the Ferns last year.
Match: Jillaroos v Kiwi Ferns
Week 1 -
Venue: Queensland Country Bank Stadium, Townsville
Kiwi Ferns Pacific Championships squad
Abigail Roache (Newcastle Knights)
Amelia Pasikala* (Sydney Roosters)
Angelina Teakaraanga-Katoa* (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Annessa Biddle* (Cronulla Sharks)
Apii Nicholls (Canberra Raiders)
Ashleigh Quinlan* (Canberra Raiders)
Brooke Anderson* (Cronulla Sharks)
Capri Paekau* (Parramatta Eels)
Cheyelle Robins-Reti* (Canberra Raiders)
Georgia Hale (Gold Coast Titans)
Jasmine Fogavini* (Brisbane Broncos)
Laishon Albert Jones (Newcastle Knights)
Leianne Tufuga* (Wests Tigers)
Mele Hufanga (Brisbane Broncos)
Mya Hill-Moana (Sydney Roosters)
Najvada George* (Wests Tigers)
Otesa Pule (Sydney Roosters)
Raecene McGregor (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Shanice Parker (Newcastle Knights)
Tiana Davison* (Newcastle Knights)
Tyla Nathan-Wong* (St George Illawarra Dragons)
* denotes potential debut