If Autumn-Rain Daly-Stephens keeps up her current winning streak she is going to need a bigger trophy cabinet.

In 2017 she collected winners' medals with Waikite in the Baywide premier competition and with the Bay of Plenty Volcanix in the Farah Palmer Cup Championship. The big question now is whether she will add a Bayleys National Sevens title to her list of achievements this weekend.

The winger, blessed with pure speed and an eye for the tryline, played in the national tournament last year. She started with a bang, scoring tries in the first two pool games, but disaster struck as she was forced to sit out the rest of the tournament with a hamstring injury.

"My goal for this year is to hopefully not get injured and play the whole tournament. I'm pretty excited, but nervous as well. Hopefully our team can get the win, it would be a privilege to win the tournament," Daly-Stephens said.


This is the last time the national sevens will be held in Rotorua, before making the move to Tauranga. She hoped it would be a memorable tournament.

"We've got a really good team this year, a good mix of experience and a variety of talents. We've got a couple of schoolgirls which is cool."

She said she was doing all she could to learn from experienced teammates such as Kelly Brazier and Michaela Blyde - both New Zealand representatives.

The former Western Heights High School student said, in terms of rugby achievements, last year was her best so far.

"It was a pretty awesome year. This year, after the sevens, I really want to focus on the Volcanix, because we'll be playing in the Premiership. That's exciting and a new challenge for us, I'm looking forward to continuing training and being better for the season."

The Stephens name is not unfamiliar in Bay of Plenty rugby circles, Autumn-Rain's mother Eliza Stephens was also a Bay of Plenty representative. The pair were teammates last year on the Baywide champion Waikite team.

10 Jan, 2018 7:30am
3 minutes to read

Despite being a prolific try-scorer Daly-Stephens said she enjoyed defence and making tackles more than the attacking side of the game.

Regardless of which aspect of the game she prefers, if she gets the ball in space, good luck to any defenders trying to catch her.

Bayleys National Sevens - Key information
Pool A: Counties Manukau, Taranaki, Waikato, Whanganui
Pool B: Bay of Plenty, Auckland, Canterbury, Mid Canterbury
Pool C: Wellington, Tasman, Northland, Southland
Pool D: Manawatu, North Harbour, Hawke's Bay, Otago

Pool A: Waikato, Canterbury, Otago, Poverty Bay
Pool B: Manawatu, Bay of Plenty, Wellington, North Harbour
Pool C: Auckland, Counties Manukau, Hawke's Bay, Southland

When: January 13-14
Where: Rotorua International Stadium
Tickets: www.ticketmaster.co.nz (Adults $15, child under-15 $5, under-5 free, family tickets $35
Watch: Live on Sky Sport