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The Tahiti women's national team, Vahine Ura, during training.

Tahiti and Cook Islands are underway with the first of their two international friendly matches and both sides are keen for the matches to keep them on track in their preparations for the OFC Women’s Nations Cup in November.

Stephanie Spielmann, coach of the Tahiti women’s national team and FTF women’s football development officer said she has been working with the majority of her squad for two months now as part of the pre-selection phase.

“Our last regroupement we organised a test match which helped us to find the 25 players we would retain for these friendly matches,” Spielmann explained.

“The objective is to get a real idea of the level of our team, to see the main areas which we will need to work on until the OFC Women’s Nations Cup.”

Having brought a mix of youth, experience and new faces together for the trip to Tahiti, Cook Islands national women’s team coach Jason Stephens is also using the week-long stay and the two friendlies, to assess his squad.

“Outside of OFC competitions we don’t play any exhibition or friendly matches against other nations. This is our first official friendly match and we’re really excited to be on the field Tuesday night for the first of our two matches against Tahiti,” Stephens said.

“Our preparations began in January and we have been training three times a week since the beginning of the year working on several different areas.

“We started with physical preparation and fitness of the team. Then we moved onto the organisation of the team and how it functions in general as a group. Finally we have worked on preparing for these matches against Tahiti.

“We will put into action everything we have been working on in training. These matches are a fantastic opportunity for us to assess the level of our game.”

The first match kicked off at 6pm in Tahiti this evening at Stade de l’AS Manu Ura in Paea. The second match will take place on Friday at 6pm, this time at the FTF Technical Centre.



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