Aussie Ameliaranne Wells in line for Silver Ferns

HAMISH BIDWELL
Last updated 12:04 22/08/2014
Ameliaranne Wells
CROSSING THE DITCH: Ameliaranne Wells is swapping a Queensland Firebirds dress for a Central Pulse one.

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The inclusion of former Australian age-group shooter Ameliaranne Wells will be the major talking point, following the naming of 26 players to take part in next month's Silver Ferns trials.

The 23-year-old Wells is a born and bred Queenslander and has spent the last four years playing for the Firebirds in the trans-Tasman Netball League.

But, by virtue of having a New Zealand-born father, Wells will turn out for the Wellington-based Central Pulse next year as a local player.

That also qualifies her to play for the Silver Ferns and coach Waimarama Taumaunu has wasted no time in summoning Wells.

She was due to arrive in New Zealand in late November but will now assemble in Auckland with the other 25 players on September 15.

At the completion of the five-day trials, an 18-strong list of contracted players will be announced for the 2014/15 period, which includes next year's World Cup in Sydney.

Twelve of that 18 will also be named in the New Zealand squad to meet Australia in October's Constellation Cup series.

Beyond Wells, those required for trials are a mixture of the tried and the up-and-coming.

Defender Erena Mikaere is an interesting inclusion, given she's about to play her trans-Tasman netball from Perth.

No New Zealand player has ever tried their luck with an Australian franchise so there's no precedent for a player having been picked from over there.

But it's at the shooting end where positions will be the most keenly contested and Taumaunu has already indicated that it will be an important five days for Bailey Mes and Malia Paseka.

It will be equally interesting to see if Wells can vault straight past them and even a Commonwealth Games incumbent like Ellen Halpenny.

The trialists are: Jodi Brown, Leana de Bruin, Katarina Cooper, Kayla Cullen, Temalisi Fakahokotau, Shannon Francois, Katrina Grant, Ellen Halpenny, Joline Henry, Phoenix Karaka, Casey Kopua, Laura Langman, Cathrine Latu, Camilla Lees, Liana Leota, Bailey Mes, Erena Mikaere, Malia Paseka, Jamie-Lee Price, Grace Rasmussen, Te Paea Selby-Rickit, Courtney Tairi, Anna Thompson, Jo Trip, Maria Tutaia and Ameliaranne Wells.

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