Watch: Black Ferns skipper Fiao'o Fa'amusili explains her retirement U-turn - 'I'm still passionate about the game'

Black Ferns captain Fiao'o Fa'amusili has explained her decision to postpone her playing retirement, as New Zealand's first ever centrally contracted female players were revealed in Auckland today.

Having led the Black Ferns to a fifth Women's World Cup in Ireland last year, Fa'amusili, 37, hung up her boots having spent most of her adult life playing for New Zealand.

However, at today's announcement, the inspirational captain revealed she will come out of retirement, one of 28 players now contracted to New Zealand Rugby.

"I was asked to come and help grow the girls, and offer my knowledge and skills," she told 1 NEWS.

"I'm still passionate about the game, I've been training through summer, the body's feeling good, so I'm doing what I still love which is rugby.

"I'm back to earn the right to wear that black jersey."

Fa'amusili also revealed her decision process behind her sudden U-turn.

"It (the decision) was made, probably, at the beginning of the year, probably around February-March."

"I went and had a game of sevens in Samoa, and my body was still in good nick.

"The love of the game was still there, so I'm here to help grow and develop these girls into the new era that we're heading towards."

The World Cup winning leader isn't hanging up her boots as women's rugby enters a new era. Source: 1 NEWS