New Zealand Rugby announced their men’s and women’s squads for the Rio Olympics on Sunday, and there are plenty of familiar faces involved in both.
With a tiny bit of pomp, Gordon Tietjens and Sean Horan confirmed their travelling squads as rugby returns to the Olympic Games.
Both sides consist chiefly of veterans of the Sevens game. Scott Curry will resume his role as captain, with former captain DJ Forbes as his understudy.
One regular member of the squad, Kurt Baker, has been left out by Gordon Tietjens, though the back has been struggling with form in the last part of the season. Former Sevens great and World Cup winner Liam Messam has also been left out of the squad.
The electric brothers Rieko and Akira Ioane have been included, and another pair of siblings to represent New Zealand will be Sonny Bill Williams and his sister Niall Williams.
The full squads are as follows:
New Zealand Men’s Sevens
Full squad: Scott Curry (C), Sam Dickson, DJ Forbes, Akira Ioane, Reiko Ioane, Gillies Kaka, Tim Mikkelson, Augustine Pulu, Teddy Stanaway, Regan Ware, Joe Webber, Sonny Bill Williams.
Injury replacements: Sione Molia, Lewis Ormond.
New Zealand Women’s Sevens
Full squad: Sarah Goss (C), Shakira Baker, Kelly Brazier, Gayle Broughton, Theresa Fitzpatrick, Kayla McAllister, Huriana Manuel, Tyla Nathan-Wong, Terina Te Tamaki, Ruby Tui, Niall Williams, Portia Woodman.
Injury replacements: Michaela Blyde, Shiray Tane.
The first Olympic Sevens match will be on the 8th of August, when the New Zealand women take on Spain.
The men face Great Britain, Kenya and Spain in the pool phase a few days later.
Paul Peerdeman, Pundit Arena