South Canterbury's Cass Reid has taken the next big step in her career by retaining her place in the Black Sticks team to travel to Argentina next month.
The 18-year-old earned a surprise callup to the senior national team for a six-test home series against India last month when she earned five caps and scored her first international goal.
The former Craighead pupil expected to be relegated to the Junior Black Sticks to make way for the returning veteran players who did not take part in the series after a busy Olympic campaign in 2012.
However, the striker-turned-midfielder was one of nine players who kept their spots while eight Olympians also returned to the mix.
Black Sticks women's head coach Mark Hager said although his side had a convincing series win against the Indians, it would need to lift its game when it plays No 2 ranked Argentina in four weeks' time.
"It is a great chance for players to prove themselves against one of the world's best teams," he said.
"It's always more challenging playing away from home in an environment that isn't familiar. It will be a good test, especially for the less experienced players."
Argentina's silver medal winning team remains largely unchanged since the London Olympics, with seven-time world player of the year Luciana Aymar a likely starter for the five-test series.
The Black Sticks start training for the series from Monday. They leave for Argentina on February 21 before returning on March 4.
After the series against Argentina, their next assignment will be a four nations tournament in New Zealand in April.
Reid will host several training sessions at the Trust Aoraki Turf today to help fund her various upcoming campaigns this year.
- The Timaru Herald