Marino-Tauhinu back in the Black Ferns after shoulder injury


Marino-Tauhinu was included in the 31-strong Black Ferns squad to compete in the Pacific Four Series against Australia, Canada and the United States, starting on Queen's Birthday Monday in Tauranga.


Marino-Tauhinu, 30, said it was an honour to be back in the mix with the Black Ferns after recovering from a shoulder reconstruction nearly a year ago.


"It's been a grind, but I'm so stoked to be back. I had only a few games in Aupiki, club [rugby] and I was lucky enough to come back in to a couple of the training camps and was selected in the team," she said.


Making her debut for Auckland in 2011, the Kawakawa-born player transferred to Counties Manukau in 2013 and has played 57 games for them. Included in that was the first Farah Palmer Cup championship for the side in 2016.



She was part of the first Chiefs women's team who played the Blues in the inaugural Super Rugby game in Auckland in 2021.


First named in the Black Ferns squads in 2015 and 2017, she had to wait until 2019 before getting her first Black Ferns contract and making her international debut. She has played eight times since then.


Playing in New Zealand in front of her whānau would be especially pleasing because they were the players' backbones in terms of support.


"Everyone in this team has whānau that take them to everything and supported them the whole way so I'm absolutely stoked and it's going to be surreal," she said.


Playing Aupiki had been outstanding. The rugby was second to none, and it was a great stepping stone heading into the Pacific Four, she said.


"There's a lot of young talent coming through. Even our senior girls have upped their game, and the rugby's gone a lot better.


"I can't wait to take the field. I can't wait to be amongst all these amazing beautiful wāhine toa and be amongst the crowds," she said.


The Black Ferns take on Australia in their opening Test of the Pacific Four Series on Monday 6 June at the Tauranga Domain. Get your tickets HERE.


All the action will be live on Spark Sport in New Zealand, with delayed coverage of Monday's Test to be broadcast an hour later on Three and ThreeNow.



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