Footballers make grade
A pair of Three Kings United players will be part of the 20-strong squad of Young Football Ferns priming themselves to take on Australia in a three-match international series this month.
New Young Football Ferns coach Jitka Klimkova has named midfielder Isabella Richards and forward Martine Puketapu as part of her first squad.
Mt Albert striker Jade Parris, from Metro FC, has also been picked for the team.
It will be the first time Richards and Parris have taken to the pitch as Young Football Ferns but Puketapu has experience on her side as one of only three veterans from the under-17 World Cup remaining.
The team kick off the series with their Australian counterparts on Sunday with a closed-door match in Canberra before following it up with games on August 14 and 17.
Klimkova says it will be a great experience for the Young Ferns to face top-10 opposition.
‘‘We’ll be able to measure the level of where we are at the moment and for the girls it will be an opportunity for them to show their skills at international level.’’
The Australian side are more experienced having already played three international games in Korea this season.
After the tour of Australia, the Young Football Ferns will return to begin preparation for the OFC Under17 Championship to be held in January next year.
They will then start training for the 2014 FIFA Under-17 Women’s World Cup taking place in Costa Rica in March and April.
Squad selection: Forward Martine Puketapu is playing for the Young Football Ferns.
Chosen player: Jade Parris is among those selected for the Young Football Ferns squad which will take on Australia.