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Three debutants in Black Stick Men's squad

Black Sticks Men
The Black Sticks Men will face five other nations at the Sultan Azlan Shah tournament. PHOTO: HOCKEY NZ

The Black Sticks Men will head to Malaysia at the end of this month to compete for the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup for the first time since 2019 and will be taking three uncapped players as the side continues to build depth ahead of the 2024 Paris Olympics.


New Zealand will feature alongside hosts Malaysia, Pakistan, South Korea, Canada and Japan at the tournament in Ipoh from May 4-11. 

 

With a number of players unavailable due to European club commitments, head coach Greg Nicol said it was a chance to give the wider squad a chance to improve their match sharpness and put their best foot forward for selection for the Olympics. 

 

“The recent camp gave us the opportunity to look at a number of players and we're pleased with where the depth of the squad is at, which is reflected in the selections.

 

“We know that it will take a collective effort to perform in Paris and this series will be invaluable in making sure that we have a good number of players that will be prepared for the pinnacle tournament of our sport.”



The team departs for Malaysia on April 26, returning in mid-May for a weeks rest before heading to Poland for the FIH Nations Cup. The side will then return to New Zealand to further build toward the Black Sticks’ opening match in Paris against India on July 28.


BLACK STICKS SQUAD

 

George Enersen, Dom Dixon, Benji Culhane, Charlie Morrison, Blair Tarrant, David Brydon, Dane Lett, Scott Cosslett*, Malachi Buschl, Joe Morrison, Hayden Phillips, Isaac Houlbrooke, Patrick Ward, George Baker, Scott Boyde, Luke Holmes*, Jake Smith, Jonty Elmes*

 

* Uncapped

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