Big-name trio to miss Kitakyushu Sevens

Womens - Kitakyushu
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman in Japan

Australia's women Sevens will begin their post-Tim Walsh era without threee of their biggest names at the Kitakyushu Sevens.

Walsh's five-year tenure finished with a Commonwealth Games silver medal on the Gold Coast last weekend, with assistant John Manenti the interim coach for the rest of the season.

Olympic and Commonwealth Games stars Charlotte Caslick, Sharni Williams and Ellia Green will all stay at home for the third World Series leg.

Caslick suffered a head knock in Sunday's gold medal match, while Williams injured her ankle on the opening day of Commonwealth Games competition and Green aggravating a knee injury.

Page McGregor, Lauren Brown and Yasmin Meakes come into the squad for the Japanese leg, with the Aussies looking to maintain their World Series lead.

Manenti said the short turnaround between the Commonwealth Games and Kitakyushu was a blessing in disguise for the side, after an extra-time gold medal match.

"The team has been through a range of mixed emotions over the last 48 hours after that thrilling final against New Zealand but fortunately, we don’t have to wait to get back on the park," he said.

“Our whole focus will be on this next challenge ahead of us and such is the nature of Rugby Sevens you have to get back up very quickly for the next round of the HSBC Sevens World Series.

“We have some new players coming into the squad who will bring some enthusiasm and energy to the team with Page, Yasmin and Lauren now getting their opportunity.

“Sharni’s going to have further scans to see the extent of the injury to her ankle and Ellia is one that we need to manage due to the nature of her original knee injury."

The Kitakyushu Sevens kicks off on Saturday April 21, running until April 22.

SQUAD

Australian women's Sevens squad for Kitakushu Sevens

Shannon Parry (c), 26 capsa QLD and Griffith University

Demi Hayes, 5 caps, QLD and Griffith University

Dominique Du Toit, 8 caps, QLD and Macquarie University

Emma Tonegato, 20 caps, NSW and University of Adelaide

Evania Pelite, 16 caps, QLD and University of Adelaide

Georgina Friedrichs, 9 caps, QLD and University of Tasmania

Cassandra Staples, 5 caps, NSW and University of Canberra

Emma Sykes, 8 caps, QLD and University of Queensland

Alicia Quirk, 24 caps, NSW and University of New England

Emilee Cherry, 27 caps, QLD and University of Queensland

Page McGregor, 1 cap, NSW and Macquarie University

Yasmin Meakes*, ACT and University of Canberra

Lauren Brown*, QLD and Griffith University

*Uncapped on HSBC Sevens World Series

FIXTURE

Australian women's Sevens, Kitakyushu Sevens

Pool A

Saturday April 21 (all times AEST)

Australia vs China, 12:36pm

Australia vs Ireland, 3:20pm

Australia vs Spain, 6:04pm