Chasing the crown

13 May 2014

RUGBY SEVENS: Australian Women's Sevens Head Coach Tim Walsh has named the 12-strong squad that he hopes will bring home the country's first ever IRB Sevens World Series title.

Walsh makes two changes from the side that lost in the Cup Final to New Zealand in Guangzhou at the beginning of April, with Ellia Green and Nikki Etheridge returning to the squad that will travel to the Netherlands (16-18 May).

For Etheridge, it will be her first appearance in an Australian jersey since the 2013 Rugby Sevens World Cup in Moscow having made a successful return to training following injury.

Sharni Williams will captain the side, while Tiana Penitani, Evania Pelite and Saofaiga Saemo are sidelined with injury.

Centre Emilee Cherry, meanwhile, is the top points scorer in the 2013/14 IRB Sevens World Series with 138 points.

Head Coach Tim Walsh said: "We've put ourselves in a good position to win the World Series. In my opinion, we've picked a squad that is very well-balanced.

"Ellia [Green] comes back into squad after missing out on China. She's worked extremely hard over the last couple of months and gives us that X-factor. Ellia is a real match winner. Nikki [Etheridge] has fantastic athleticism as well as good speed and size. I'm looking forward to seeing her in action."

Walsh added: "Nikki is only the 16th player we have called up to the squad throughout this season's World Series - and this consistency of selection has allowed team combinations to flourish."

The Aussies are two points behind last year's Series champions New Zealand with one round of the 2013/14 IRB Women's Sevens World Series left on the calendar.

All of the action from the Netherlands will be streamed live at Follow the Qantas Men's and Women's Sevens with updates on Twitter @Aussie7s

Australian Women's Sevens fixtures in Amsterdam, Netherlands, 16-18 May:
Australia v France, Pool B, 9.20pm (EST), 16 May
Australia v South Africa, Pool B, 12.04am (EST), 17 May
Australia v Russia, Pool B, 2.48am (EST), 17 May

Australian Women's Sevens squad for the 2013-2014 IRB Sevens World Series in Amsterdam, Netherlands:
Sharni Williams - captain. Place of Birth: Batlow, NSW
Shannon Parry. Place of Birth: Brisbane, QLD
Nicole Beck. Place of Birth: Bulli, NSW
Emilee Cherry. Place of Birth: Roma, QLD. Hometown: Toowoomba, QLD
Gemma Etheridge. Place of Birth: Tamworth, NSW. Hometown: Toowoomba, QLD
Nikki Etheridge. Place of Birth: Tamworth, NSW. Hometown: Toowoomba, QLD
Amy Turner. Place of Birth: Tokoroa, New Zealand
Cobie Jane Morgan. Place of Birth: Gosford, NSW
Alicia Quirk. Place of Birth: Wagga Wagga, NSW
Emma Tonegato. Place of Birth: Wollongong, NSW
Charlotte Caslick. Place of Birth: Brisbane, QLD
Ellia Green. Place of Birth: Suva, Fiji. Hometown: Warringah, NSW


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