The Black Sticks women's hockey team are ready for the post-Mark Hager era.

It's been a fortnight since coach Hager's sudden departure to Britain after a 10-year tenure in which he oversaw their most successful period.

Hager was at the centre of an independent review launched by New Zealand Hockey last year regarding allegations of a negative team environment and he left before the findings were released - expected to be later this month.

"Obviously there was a big shock a couple of week ago, but we're a pretty positive and down-to-earth bunch of women who just get on with things," said striker Olivia Merry, who has made won 206 caps for the Black Sticks.


"There's a positive mood in the environment, and while it's a big change, it's an exciting one as well."

The squad are preparing for the start of the inaugural FIH Pro-League, a nine-team tournament played on a home and away format over the next six months, with the top four teams to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Hager's departure has seen assistant coach Sean Dancer elevated to acting head coach, with former assistant coaches Jude Mendes and Chris Leslie to help.

Merry said Dancer was doing a fantastic job.

The squad is also benefiting from the presence of former Black Stick Katie Glynn, who has been helping out at training and offering "a wealth of knowledge".

"I was in awe of her career in the early days [of my career] so it's pretty awesome to have her around some of the young members of the squad."

Glynn was one of seven former Black Sticks who strongly refuted the allegations levelled at Hager, putting their signatures to a "letter of support".

The sixth-ranked Blacks Sticks face 2018 World Cup champions and perennial hockey powerhouse the Netherlands on Sunday before playing Belgium a week later.


However, it's their round three match in Christchurch that many will be looking ahead to, as its pits them against their former coach and his Great Britain team.

Merry admitted it was going to be weird facing their former mentor in that match.

"We anticipate it will make that clash a little more competitive knowing who's coaching the other team," she said. "He'll probably yell out 'run' and we're all going to because we're just so used to it."