Vantage Black Sticks fine tuning for Tokyo

The Vantage Black Sticks have headed to Perth for their final hit-outs before the Tokyo Olympics.

The Black Sticks Men and Women will face the Kookaburras and the Hockeyroos in two FIH Pro League matches on Saturday and Sunday.

The two doubleheaders are the postponed FIH Pro League matches between the two nations that were originally scheduled to be played around Anzac Day this year.

The Black Sticks have selected squads of 20 for the Perth matches, with four players added to the Tokyo Olympic squads of 16 named recently.

Vantage Black Sticks Men’s Head Coach Darren Smith said the team would be without Waikato defender Nic Woods and Wellington striker Jacob Smith in Perth as they both have minor injuries. They have been replaced by Aidan Sarikaya and Sam Hiha.

Smith said there were a couple of areas they were looking to improve on after losing all four matches to Australia in the recent Sentinel Homes Trans-Tasman series.

“I want us to react better when under pressure and also to control possession for longer periods. Australia were much better at holding on to the ball.”

Vantage Black Sticks Women’s Head Coach Graham Shaw said the weekend’s games were all about getting the small details right.

“We’ve just got to make sure we’re accurate with everything we do. We performed well at times but we’ve got to minimise those poorer moments.”

Nelson’s Kelsey Smith will play her 100th match for her country on Saturday.

“It is a fantastic milestone for Kelsey especially after the difficult time she’s had coming back from an ACL injury,” said Shaw.

“In the last few months we’ve started to see the attacking threat she can be.”

The Black Sticks teams warm up for the Pro League matches with games against the Perth Thundersticks.  All four Pro League matches will be broadcast live on Spark Sport.

FIH Pro League – Australia v New Zealand
Perth Hockey Stadium at Curtin University

Saturday 26 June
Kookaburras v Vantage Black Sticks Men 12.30pm local time (4.30pm NZT)
Hockeyroos v Vantage Black Sticks Women 3pm local time (7pm NZT)

Sunday 27 June
Kookaburras v Vantage Black Sticks Men 12.30pm local time (4.30pm NZT)
Hockeyroos v Vantage Black Sticks Women 3pm local time (7pm NZT)

Vantage Black Sticks Women’s squad

Shirt no. NameAssociationCaps (goals) Position
1 Tarryn Davey Thames Valley 66 (1) Defender
2 Olivia Shannon Manawatu 29 (4) Striker
4 Olivia Merry Canterbury 236 (113) Striker
5 Frances Davies Tauranga 81 Defender
12 Ella Gunson Northland 224 (11) Defender
13 Samantha Charlton (vice-captain) Tauranga 255 (8) Midfielder
14 Tyler Lench Auckland 1 Striker
15 Grace O’Hanlon Auckland 63 Goalkeeper
16 Elizabeth Thompson Auckland 191 (12) Defender
17 Stephanie Dickins North Harbour 27 (2) Defender
19 Tessa Jopp Otago 24 (1) Midfielder
20 Megan Hull Wairarapa 35 (1) Defender
22 Katie Doar Auckland 19 Midfielder
24 Rose Keddell Tauranga 211 (16) Midfielder
25 Kelsey Smith Nelson99 (14) Midfielder
27 Holly Pearson Taranaki 22 Striker
31 Stacey Michelsen (captain) Northland 291 (34) Midfielder
33 Julia King Auckland 126 (9) Midfielder
34 Hope Ralph Taranaki 11 (2) Striker
42 Georgia Barnett Manawatu 37 Goalkeeper

Vantage Black Sticks Men’s squad

Shirt no. NameAssociationCaps (goals)Position
2 Oliver MacIntyre Wellington 3 (1) Defender
3 David Brydon Canterbury 56 Defender
4 Dane Lett Wellington 81 (2) Defender
7 Nick Ross Otago 131 (4) Midfielder
9 Sam Hiha Hawke’s Bay Striker
12 Sam Lane Canterbury 68 (20) Striker
14 Jared Panchia Auckland 137 (26) Midfielder
15 George Enersen Canterbury 64 Goalkeeper
16 Aidan Sarikaya Waikato 47 (3) Midfielder
21 Kane Russell Otago 165 (71) Defender
22 Blair Tarrant (captain) Otago 215 (4) Defender
23 Dylan Thomas Hawke’s Bay 30 (2) Midfielder
24 Sean Findlay Hawke’s Bay 4 (1) Midfielder
25 Shea McAleese Hawke’s Bay 314 (34) Defender
27 Stephen Jenness Wellington 252 (91) Striker
29 Hugo Inglis (vice-captain) Otago 235 (66) Midfielder
30 George Muir North Harbour 144 (18) Striker
31 Steve Edwards North Harbour 224 (23) Midfielder
32 Nick Wilson Manawatu 174 (76) Striker
34 Leon Hayward Auckland 10 Goalkeeper
  • June 21st, 2021 in
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