17 Aug 2017

Faamuausili gets 50th cap

6:43 am on 17 August 2017

Hooker Fiao'o Faamausili will play her 50th game for the Black Ferns after being named to lead the side in their final pool game at the women's rugby World Cup in Ireland.

Black Fern captain Fiao’o Faamausili with the Laurie O'Reilly Cup during the Womens Rugby International, Black Ferns V Australia, Rugby Park, Christchurch, New Zealand, 13th June, 2017

Black Ferns captain Fiao'o Faamausili with the Laurie O'Reilly Cup Photo: Photosport

Faamausili is the most capped New Zealand player and will lead the team out for their match against Canada.

Halfback Kendra Cocksedge is set to reach 40 caps and lock Eloise Blackwell 30 caps.

The winner of tonight's game will qualify for the semi-finals, while the best second placed team from the three pools will also make the last four.

Coach Glenn Moore said it would be a crucial match for the Black Ferns.

"Whoever wins this game, probably wins the pool. We need to win it and ultimately, we'd like to win it with a bonus point."

He said he'd been happy with their 121 - nil win over Hong Kong which saw 19 tries scored - eight by winger Portia Woodman.

"The Hong Kong match was critical for us to score a good tally of points and have none scored against us. It will stand us in good stead if points differentials need to be calculated.

"Everyone is very buoyant and excited. This will be a very memorable day for Fiao'o, reaching a 50th cap while at a World Cup is extremely special."

Moore said that true to Faamausili's character, she was determined to focus on the task at hand, rather than her individual achievement.

"It's a real testament to Fiao'o's leadership. As captain she puts the team before everything. It will be a very proud day for the entire Black Ferns family and for rugby."

The team is (number of caps in brackets):

1. Toka Natua 13

2. Fiao'o Faamausili - captain 49

3. Aldora Itunu 12

4. Eloise Blackwell 29

5. Charmaine Smith 13

6. Charmaine McMenamin 11

7. Sarah Goss 7

8. Aroha Savage 25

9. Kendra Cocksedge 39

10. Victoria Subritzky-Nafatali 16

11. Renee Wickliffe 27

12. Kelly Brazier 34

13. Stacey Waaka 8

14. Portia Woodman 13

15. Selica Winiata 28

16. Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate 17

17. Sosoli Talawadua 5

18. Aotearoa Mata'u 7

19. Rebecca Wood 4

20. Linda Itunu 33

21. Kristina Sue 8

22. Theresa Fitzpatrick 4

23. Carla Hohepa 16