New Zealand Women's sevens coach Sean Horan has named his squad of 12 for the second leg of the IRB Women's Sevens World Series, to be held in Houston, USA next month.
Six players from the first tournament in Dubai last year have retained their spots, while Horan has also opted for experience with the inclusion of five 2012 Black Ferns following their end-of-year tour to England. They are Shakira Baker, Kelly Brazier, Kendra Cocksedge, Halie Hurring, and Selica Winiata.
Horan said he had been impressed with the level of competition among women at the Pub Charity national sevens held in Queenstown last weekend. An outstanding tournament for Waikato's Honey Hireme saw her earn a first-time call-up to the national squad.
"Houston offers us a great opportunity to develop our talent and depth, particularly as we have an eye on the World Cup in Russia later this year," Horan said.
The New Zealand Women's Sevens squad for the Houston tournament is: Shakira Baker (Manawatu), Kelly Brazier (Otago), Kendra Cocksedge (Canterbury), Sarah Goss (Manawatu), Linda Itunu (Auckland), Honey Hireme (Waikato), Carla Hohepa (Waikato), Halie Hurring (Otago), Huriana Manuel (captain, Auckland), Kayla McAlister (Auckland), Selica Winiata (Manawatu), Portia Woodman (Auckland).