21 June 2022 – Veteran Kiwi Fern hooker Krystal Rota has been honoured with her second Test captaincy for this Saturday’s clash against Tonga.
Rota has been a focal point of the Ferns team, a mainstay at the hooker position after making her debut in the 2016 Anzac test victory over the Jillaroos.
The Manurewa junior was named co-captain for the Māori All Stars’ inaugural encounter with the Indigenous All Stars during the 2019 pre-season; she scored the winning try and received the Trish Hina Medal as player of the match.
Rota then contributed 19 tackles and 94 running metres to the Kiwi Ferns’ mid-season win over Samoa.
The veteran then starred in the Kiwi Ferns’ World Cup Nines victory and was at hooker again for the subsequent Test against the Jillaroos in Wollongong.
Rota’s leadership qualities came to the fore in 2020. After leading Māori All-Stars against Indigenous All-Stars for the second straight season, Rota skippered Counties Manukau to glory in the inaugural Sky Sports NZRL National Women’s Premiership.
She was then named Kiwi Ferns captain for the end-of-season Test against Fetu Samoa, producing a strong performance at hooker in New Zealand’s 28-8 victory.
“She’s an invaluable member of the squad and plays a crucial role in the Fern’s leadership spine,” said Head Coach Ricky.
“The impact she has on those around her, from players to staff, is evident and the leadership accolades she has under her belt speaks volumes.”
After a two-year hiatus, the Kiwi Ferns face Tonga at Mt Smart on Saturday (3:10 pm), where the veteran Kiwi Fern looks to lead her side to victory.
2 November 2020
Kiwi Ferns veteran hooker Krystal Rota has been honoured with her first Test captaincy for this Saturday’s clash against Fetu Samoa Invitational.
Rota has been a focal point of the Ferns team, a mainstay at the hooker position for the better part of four years after making her debut in the 2016 Anzac test victory over the Jillaroos.
No stranger to the captaincy role, Rota has captained the Counties Manukau women’s team for three years, including over the weekend when they won their 11th straight women’s title by taking out the Sky Sport Women’s Premiership in a convincing win over the Akarana Falcons.
Rota has also captained the Maori All-Stars for two years where she scored the match-winning try in their inaugural game against the Indigenous All-Stars and was subsequently awarded the Trish Hina Medal as player of the match.
The Manurewa Marlins junior has gone on to play nine Tests for New Zealand and was a standout in the NRL World Nines campaign where the Ferns were crowned World Nines Champions after beating the Jillaroos 17-15 in the final.
Despite opting to miss out this year due to Covid-19 logistics, she is also a key member of the Warriors’ NRLW campaign where she played a vital role in their first two seasons.
Kiwi Ferns Head Coach Ricky Henry says, “Krystal has been a standout member of this team for the past four years and shows all the qualities of a great leader. She’s no stranger to the responsibility and the impact she has on those around her is evident.
“It’s one of the highest honours to captain your country and it was a pleasure to give her this opportunity.”
The Clash of the Pacific Women’s Double Header is taking place Saturday, November 7 at Mt Smart Stadium. Tonga women will face Niue women at 2:00 pm followed by the Kiwi Ferns v Fetu Samoa Invitational at 4:00 pm.
Both games will be televised live on Sky Sport 4 and Fox Sports in Australia. To purchase tickets to the Clash of the Pacific Women’s Double Header, please click here.