Black Ferns to play three-match schedule after Farah Palmer Cup concludes

Dr Farah Palmer has called for the Black Ferns to be considered for professional rugby contracts....
The Black Ferns at the 2017 World Cup. Photo:Getty Images
The Black Ferns will get a run this year after all, although the side will not play an overseas team.

New Zealand Rugby has confirmed a three-match schedule to be played in November at the conclusion of the Farah Palmer Cup competition.

The top women players will play in a match between the Possibles and Probables on November 7.

The Black Ferns will then play the New Zealand Barbarians on November 14 and 21.

Confirmation of venues and kick-off times will be announced in the coming weeks.

NZR chief executive Mark Robinson said it was exciting to be able to secure matches for the Black Ferns and their fans, despite the challenges caused by the global pandemic.

‘‘We’re committed to having the Black Ferns play in front of our local fans as we build up to next year’s Rugby World Cup, and the opening rounds of the Farah Palmer Cup have been a good indicator of the outstanding quality of rugby we can expect from these three matches,” he said.

The Covid-19 pandemic meant all countries had had to revise their international women’s fixtures this year, Robinson said.

“Covid-19 has caused a range of unique complexities for the international women’s game. Many players balance work commitments with rugby, so for many teams extended periods away from their home countries to play international rugby is tough. The financial implications of quarantine and travel are also significant to teams.”

Black Ferns coach Glenn Moore said the matches would be an opportunity for players to contest a spot in the Rugby World Cup squad for 2021.

“Everyone has a lot to play for. While we would have loved to play eight tests this year as planned, the Covid-19 situation has delivered significant challenges for everyone. We’ll take the opportunity we have to assemble and make the most of the rugby we do have. The most important thing is to be ready for September next year and we are determined to have the most prepared team there.’’

The 2020 Black Ferns contracted squad was announced in March.

With the World Cup set to be played in New Zealand next year the Black Ferns are keen to play games in preparation.


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