Griffith has announced a strong 24-player squad to compete at this year’s AON Rugby Sevens’ Series and defend their series champions title.
With the first tournament set for September 14, preparations are well underway and regular squad trainings and a round of development tournaments helped final squad selection.
Bachelor of Oral Health and Dental Science student Laura Waldie, who was a standout in the 2018 series, returns to the fold this year along with a number of fresh faces.
“We had such a fantastic year in 2018 and this year we have been off to a really positive start as well,” Laura said.
“We were involved in a number of development tournaments which gave girls a chance to put their hand up for selection.
“I’m excited to see what our new players bring to the squad as well as the impact of our returning squad members.”
Griffith University finished with three first place tournaments last year, securing the title of 2018 series champions.
Coach Moana Virtue credits last year’s stellar season to hard work and a positive team environment but knows there’s no place for complacency this year.
New squad inclusions and high school students Lucy Single and Tiana Raftstrand-Smith caught the eye of coach Virtue with strong performances during the development tournaments.
“To have just over half of the squad as returning players this year is great for our experience, although I’ve been really impressed with the new talent especially with how young they are,” said Virtue.
“The series win meant a lot to us in 2018 but it’s a new year and teams are working just as hard.
“Our attention is now on coming together as a squad and putting the work in so we’re ready to go, come the first tournament.”
This year the AON Rugby Seven’s series will hold four tournaments over October and September with Brisbane to host the first tournament, followed by the Gold Coast the following fortnight.
AON 7s Griffith rugby squad:
Ellen Field, Kiri Lingman, Samantha Lingman, Eloise O’Brien, Georgie Friedrichs, Marama Thomas, Ngaupoko Masters, Taylor Fenton, Laura Waldie, Katie Curtis, Kahli Kenwood, Eloise Schlecht, Ivania Wong, Cecilia Smith, Georgia Devlin, Marlugu Dixon, Shannon Mato, Charlotte Kennington, Tiana Raftstrand-Smith, Alana Elisaia, Courtney Hodder, Alysia Lefau-Fakaosilea, Lucy Single, Yolanda Gittins.
Australian 7s players Demi Hayes, Lily Dick and Samantha Treherne have also joined the Griffith 7s squad. For more: https://news.griffith.edu.au/2019/08/23/aussie-7s-star-demi-hayes-returns-to-represent-griffith-uni/