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Black Ferns set to be shorthanded in Chicago

Newshub logoNewshub 16/05/2018 Kirstie Stanway
Try-scoring machine Portia Woodman won't feature in Chicago. © Image - Getty; Video - Newshub. Try-scoring machine Portia Woodman won't feature in Chicago.

The world champion Black Ferns will be without star players Portia Woodman and Sarah Goss when they take on the United States in an historic test at Chicago's Soldier Field later this year.

The Ferns will make their debut on American soil when they play the opening match of a triple-header against the host nation in November, which includes a Six Nations showdown between Ireland and Italy and the Maori All Blacks vs USA.

However, it seems the successful sevens programme will take priority over fifteens.

With the opening round of the sevens world series set to take place around the same time, many of the side's crossover stars won’t be considered for the Chicago test.

Black Ferns coach Glenn Moore has already said he's preparing to be left short-handed in the US.

"I'm not expecting many of the sevens girls will be available," Moore told Newshub.

"We still have to sit down with the sevens group and have a talk about that, which we're planning to do over the next few weeks."

Although there's been one major boost for Moore's side in the return of World Cup-winning hooker Fiao'o Fa'amausili, who's confirmed she'll be coming out of retirement and will feature in the Stateside match.

"She's also aware that we've got some young ones coming through and she was really motivated that she wanted to be part of that development of this new group."

New Zealand Rugby will release the names of the first 30 Black Ferns players to receive professional contracts next week.

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