Silver Ferns sharpshooter Maria Tutaia has revealed that she turned down several lucrative offers from Australia in order to remain in New Zealand.
Silver Fern Maria Tutaia
Tutaia, 30, signed a two-year deal to remain with the Mystics last week, amid speculation she would move to Australia to be with Sydney-based fiancee, Wallabies fullback Israel Folau.
Moving to live and play netball in Australia would see Tutaia join the likes of Laura Langman and Cat Tuivaiti as intelligible for the Silver Ferns due to playing in an overseas competition.
Speaking to Fairfax, Tutaia revealed that she came close to jumping ship, before deciding to stay at home.
"There were a few options, but I am very happy here in New Zealand," she said.
"The relationship and the learning with the Mystics this year is something I wanted to be a part of."
Tutaia will have a break from competition over the next year, but insists that she is still committed to the Silver Ferns, with 2017 to play host to the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.
"I have committed myself to the Mystics and netball here in New Zealand."
Tutaia is currently in camp with the Silver Ferns' triallists, with the full squad announced on August 7.