Following four days of trials Tall Ferns coach Kennedy Kereama has named 14 players to attend a preparation camp ahead of the international programme.
The squad will remain in camp in South Auckland until Saturday before the 12 player team is announced later in the week. The Ferns leave on Saturday to attend the William Jones Cup in Taiwan followed by a three test home series against Japan.
Kereama is delighted with the balance of the squad. “The team has a good blend of youth and experience. I have been delighted with the enthusiasm, commitment and attitude of all the players and it is always difficult to advise players that they haven’t been selected on the team. However, I am confident that the players remaining in camp form the strongest group available to the coaching staff. We are approaching the upcoming international programme with great optimism as we build towards the Olympic Qualifying series and beyond.”
Of the 14 retained, six of the players are returning from College programmes in the USA, seven players are contracted to Australian clubs with point guard Jordan Hunter the sole New Zealand based athlete.
Chevannah Paalvast, Jacinta Beckley and Tessa Boagni are the uncapped players in the 14. Boagni, at 19 years, is the youngest member of the squad.
Following the Japan series the Tall Ferns will contest the FIBA Oceania Series against Australia, in Melbourne on August 15 and Tauranga on August 17. The winner of this series earns direct entry to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
Micaela Cocks, Townsville Fire (AUS)
Jordan Hunter, Auckland Counties Manukau Lady Hawks
Stella Beck, Saint Mary’s College of California (USA)
Samara Gallaher, Hume City Broncos (AUS), Oceana Gold Rush Otago
Natalie Taylor, Gladstone Power (AUS)
Kalani Purcell, Brigham Young University (USA)
Chevannah Paalvast, Southern Peninsular Sharks (AUS)
Jacinta Beckley, Seattle University (USA)
Lisa Wallbutton, Willeton Tigers (AUS)
Jess Bygate, Gladstone Power in (AUS), Nelson Sparks
Megan Craig, Lakeside Lightning (AUS)
Penina Davidson, University of California (USA)
Tessa Boagni, California State University (USA)
Josie Stockill, Colgate University (USA)
TALL FERNS SCHEDULE
20-26 July, Preparation Camp, South Auckland
27-31 July, William Jones Cup, Taiwan
27 July v Chinese Taipei B, 5pm local time.
28 July v Japan, 3pm local time.
29 July v South Korea, 3pm local time
30 July v Chinese Taipei A, 7pm local time
31 July v USA Select, 3pm local time
5-9 August, Three game series v Japan
5 August v Japan, Cowles Stadium, Christchurch, tip-off 11am
7 August v Japan, Cowles Stadium, Christchurch, tip-off 7pm
9 August v Japan, EA Stadium, Ashburton, tip-off 2pm
15 August, FIBA Oceania Series, v Australia, Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne
17 August, FIBA Oceania Series, v Australia, ASB Arena, Tauranga
Tickets for the Tall Ferns v Australia game in Tauranga are on sale through
www.ticketek.co.nz for details on both the Tall Blacks and Tall Ferns in the FIBA Oceania Series.