Position in 2019
3rd in Premiership
Head coach Ross Bond said selecting his squad this year was the toughest process in his 20 year coaching career. He said in some positions, they have up to five players competing for the jersey.
Black Ferns Sevens player Dhys Faleafaga will link up with her sister Lyric, while Monica Tagoai and Marcelle Parkes return from injury.
Former Black Fern and Auckland Storm forward Charlene Gubb will suit up for the Pride. She played 38 games for the Storm and will form a strong combination with the likes of Jackie Patea-Fereti, Parkes and Joanah Ngan-Woo.
Ngan-Woo is closing in on 50 games for the Pride, just two games short of the milestone. Fellow Black Ferns teammate Ayesha Leti-I’iga was the top try scorer in 2019, bagging 12 tries throughout the season. She’ll provide plenty of excitement on the left wing for Wellington.
It’s an exciting looking Wellington side and they’ll be looking for a big season, remembering they are the only side to have beaten Canterbury in the last two years, having defeated them 43-38 in 2018. They face off in Week 5 in Christchurch and the JJ Stewart Trophy could potentially be on the line as well.
Dhys Faleafaga (Black Ferns Sevens), Acacia Claridge-Te Iwimate (injury), Monica Tagoai (injury), Marcelle Parkes (injury), Dora Laupola (injury), Charlene Gubb, Georgia Daals (Japan)
Elieta Taito (retired), Mary-Lee Sau (unavailable), Bernadette Robertson (injury), Moana Solia (injury), Leah Conley (injury)
Players to watch: Dhys & Lyric Faleafaga
The two sisters. Both extremely talented and will be a handful on attack for the Pride. Dhys returns to Wellington from the Black Ferns Sevens and will be looking forward to some solid minutes in the 15s set up. Older sister Lyric featured on the wing for Wellington last year. She underwent shoulder surgery at the end of last year. The Faleafaga sisters faced each other in club rugby last month, Dhys for Northern United and Lyric for Marist St Pats. But it’s going to be great to see them alongside each other in this strong Pride squad.
Wellington Pride squad
Rejieli Uluinayau, Amanda Rasch, Fa’asua Makisi, Josephine Falesita, Ayesha Leti-I’iga, Janet Taumoli, Barbra Taumoli, Raylene Lolo, Precious Auimatagi, Joanah Ngan-Woo, Charlene Gubb, Sinead Toala-Ryder, Evelyn Tea, Tina Paulo, Vaine Marsters, Kolora Lomani, Dora Laupola, Sanita Levave, Nina Foaese, Dhys Faleafaga, Angel Uila, Alice Soper, Alicia Print, Jackie Patea-Fereti, Ana Afuie, Monica Tagoai, Lyric Faleafaga, Marcelle Parkes, Montana Heslop, Georgia Daals, Thamsyn Newton, Emily Dalley, Acacia Claridge-Te Iwimate, Alia Ah Far, Tyler Bentley
Coaches: Ross Bond (Head coach), Brendan Reidy (Assistant coach), Aaron Jones (Assistant coach)
Wellington Pride draw
Tasman v Wellington
Saturday 12 September
1pm Lansdowne Park Blenheim
Wellington v Hawke’s Bay
Saturday 19 September
12.30pm Hutt Recreational Ground
Wellington v Manawatu
Friday 25 September
4.35pm Sky Stadium
Canterbury v Wellington
Saturday 3 October
4.35pm Orangetheory Stadium
Wellington v Otago
Saturday 17 October
12.05pm Porirua Park