The Police women’s rugby side departed the country yesterday to compete in the inaugural International Defence Rugby Competition in New Zealand.

Defence teams from Australia, Fiji, France, Tonga, the United Kingdom and a combined Papua New Guinea/Vanuatu side will represent their countries and militaries at the tournament in Auckland.

The Vanuatu Police women XV side are excited and look forward for the great exposure and learning experience they will take out after the competition especially meeting experience teams like Australia, Fiji who have the services of few Fijiana players.

Chief of Defence Force, Air Marshal Kevin Short stated in a statement that he was delighted for New Zealand to host the first 15-a-side Defence Women’s rugby competition.

“The New Zealand Defence Force is proud to be hosting this inaugural event, bringing together Defence women from our military partners across the Pacific and around the world to engage through sport – bonding and battling for a winning outcome,” he said.

It was also a reflection of the value the forces place on supporting their people to follow their sporting passions, alongside their professional lives, he said.

The Defence Ferns, NZDF’s mixed-service women’s rugby team, features a number of players who have competed in the Farah Palmer Cup and in Super Rugby.