Women's training intensifies as temperatures soar

NZRU     27 Jun 2013     NZRU

The tournament kicks off Saturday for the women who have now had three training sessions on pitches which surround the giant Luzhniki Olympic Stadium. The team plays their opening matches at Gorodok Stadium which is part of the Olympic complex.

"The team’s going really well, they have acclimatised with the travel and are looking good," said coach Sean Horan. "We’ve been focusing on fine tuning our preparation - acclimatising to the heat, getting used to the conditions, getting our heads right and our bodies right.

"The key focus is just getting the girls confident. We have gone through a lot of over the last six months, and progressed well so it’s just sharpening the sword and getting ready to enjoy ourselves."

The Cup is the second for Selica Winiata, the 1.55m police woman, dubbed “shorty” by her team mates and one of four remaining from the 2009 World Cup team.

"The team is shaping up really well," said Winiata. "We have been here three days, had three trainings and each training has been more intense. The girls are getting really focused – they have come to train and we are in good shape.

"We’ve been working on getting clarity around defence and our attack, making sure everyone understands their role and jobs. At the end of the day if we are going to win the World Cup, defence will do it for us so that’s a huge focus."

It’s been a big three days for the team, travelling 30 hours to reach Moscow late Sunday and with little time to see sights aside from a Red Square visit for the team photo. The goal is clear after winning the inaugural IRB Women’s Sevens World Series.

"The big goal is to the collect the World Cup and bring it home," said Winiata. "But we also want go out and have fun as a team living our family values being sisters on and off the field. "

New Zealand women’s match schedule (NZ Time)
Saturday 29 June
• 9am v Tunisia (5pm)
• 12.18pm v Netherlands (8.18pm)
• 6.32pm v Canada (2.32am 30 June)