Kuki makes NZ U21 netball squad

Thursday September 15, 2016 Written by Published in Netball
Tiana Metuarau, who played for the Cook Islands last year, is joining Silver Ferns Development Squad. 16091409 Tiana Metuarau, who played for the Cook Islands last year, is joining Silver Ferns Development Squad. 16091409

COOK  ISLANDER Tiana Metuarau has been named in the Silver Ferns Development Squad (U21) to prepare for the 2017 Netball World Youth Cup.

 

The 15-year-old shooter, who played for the national team against the Silver Ferns Development Squad in December last year, was elevated to the U21 side following strong performances at the recent U20 international tournament in Canberra, Australia.

Tiana has ancestral links to the Cook Islands through her father and former national rugby coach George Metuarau, who hails from Mauke.

Her mother is the famous Waimarama Taumaunu, the former Silver Ferns player and coach.

Silver Ferns Development Squad and New Zealand U21 team coach, Kiri Wills says Tiana alongside Kimiora Poi have continued to improve over the course of the season and earned their selection.

“Both Tiana and Kimiora have had strong seasons; they are talented players and have taken their opportunities with both hands,” Wills said in a statement.

“We are building great depth in our squad – depth that I believe will stand us in good stead as we look ahead to Netball World Youth Cup.”

Tiana’s recent achievement is a step closer to her dream of making the Silver Ferns before the age of 18 – the age Taumaunu was when she first made the national team.

In an interview with the New Zealand Herald, Taumaunu, who is set to join the England coaching team, joked the rivalry is starting to become a bit too real.

“She has kind of said it jokingly since she was quite young, now it's starting to get a little uncomfortable,” Taumaunu said.

“The landscape has changed a lot over the years, but I guess if this is the first step and it has been for others, then she is on track.”

Tiana and the Silver Ferns Development Squad will head into camp in Wellington from September 23 to 25, as part of their preparations for Netball World Youth Cup in Botswana.

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