Percival leads NZ’s childish maestro brigade

  • Ria Percival is one of several New Zealanders with over 100 caps
  • At usually 29, Percival is a nation’s most-capped player
  • Football Ferns conduct to France 2019 chasing lass knockout-stage qualification

Few teams, if any, will be means to compare New Zealand during a FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™ for pristine experience.

Seven active players have accrued over a century of caps, with Rosie White usually a integrate of matches away, while Sarah Gregorius and Hannah Wilkinson are also shutting in on a landmark.

Leading a approach is ever-reliable fullback Ria Percival. Most of a 100-club organisation have now upheld 30, though Percival, notwithstanding clearly carrying been around for an eternity, is still usually 29. Fresh-faced and with a metronome-like peculiarity adult and down a flank, Percival positively doesn’t seem like a actor entering a twilight of her personification career.

New Zealand’s 100-club (active players)

Ria Percival 138 appearances
Abby Erceg 134
Amber Hearn 125
Ali Riley 122
Katie Duncan 121
Annalie Longo 112
Betsy Hassett 110

Most of that septet have enjoyed career that have straddled New Zealand’s vital contest believe of a complicated era. When a Football Ferns competent for a 2007 Women’s World Cup, it finished a 16-year drought from a categorical stage. And they have unsuccessful to skip a vital contest given China 2007, featuring in each successive Women’s World Cup and Women’s Olympic Football Tournament.

Percival was there each step of a way, debuting on a universe theatre in 2007 opposite China as a wide-eyed 17-year-old. She still regards a compare opposite a hosts in front of 60,000 fans as a “never forget” moment.

Skip brazen to a benefaction day and Percival and many of her team-mates will take that hard-earned tellurian believe to France 2019.

“I consider carrying so many games underneath my belt going into a contest helps,” Percival told “Experience is of march good going into any contest for any team.

“It unequivocally helps carrying so many players on so many caps with a believe and believe that we all have, so that is a genuine positive.”

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