NZ women's Sevens name three newcomers for Atlanta and Langford tournaments

The New Zealand women's Sevens squad have included three newcomers Janna Vaughan, Terina Te Tamaki and Theresa Fitzpatrick for the Atlanta and Langford tournaments on April 8 and April 16.

Shiray Tane and Stacey Waaka return from injury while players not considered because of injury are Gayle Broughton, Kayla McAlister and Huriana Manuel.

Coach Sean Horan said the addition of new players was all about building more depth in 2016.

"It's a great opportunity for them to grow with back-to-back tournaments. They're both young, exciting rugby players who bring different dynamics to the team," said Horan.

"Terina is a forward with great leg speed and Janna is very physical around the contact and at the clean out so in 2016 we thought this was something we needed to look at.

"We had to make some tough decisions as always with selection. We're looking at bringing some players back and others have had to stay back to work and focus on their bodies to give them every chance for Rio."

After finishing third at the recent Sao Paulo Sevens, New Zealand is second equal with Canada in the world series, behind Australia.

The team has been drawn in Pool C at Atlanta and will play USA, Japan and Spain.

Horan said a key goal for the two upcoming tournaments was to achieve a top three season-ending place to ensure the team secured a favourable seeding for the Olympics in August.

NZ Women's Sevens squad:

Michaela Blyde (Taranaki)
Kelly Brazier (Bay of Plenty)
Theresa Fitzpatrick (Auckland)
Sarah Goss (captain) (Manawatu)
Tyla Nathan-Wong (Auckland)
Shiray Tane (Hawke’s Bay)
Terina Te Tamaki (Waikato)
Ruby Tui (Canterbury)
Janna Vaughan (Manawatu)
Stacey Waaka (Waikato)
Katarina Whata-Simpkins (Wellington)
Niall Williams (Auckland)
Selica Winiata (Manawatu)
Portia Woodman (Counties Manukau)

Shiray Tane of New Zealand evades the tackle in the Pool A match against Brazil during the first day of the IRB Women's Sevens World Series rugby tournament at the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens in Dubai, UAE, Thursday, Dec. 3rd, 2015. Photo by: Stephen Hindley/Sportdxb/Photosport
Shiray Tane of New Zealand evades the tackle in the Pool A match against Brazil. Source: Photosport