Detective Fiao’o Faamausili has been nominated for the World Rugby Womens player of the year for 2016!
One of the Black Ferns’ most experienced and consistent players with 36 caps to her name since her debut against Australia in 2002, Fiao’o Fa’amausili, a dynamic hooker who leads by example and inspires those around her. A physical force in the pack, the 36-year-old is a three-time Women’s Rugby World Cup winner who led New Zealand to a series win over Australia last month, scoring two tries in the opening 67-3 win at Eden Park.
Samoan born, Fiao’o was first introduced to rugby in 1998 after playing a one off game during her last year at Aorere College in South Auckland. “Our school never had a rugby team, so I never had the chance to play.”
That one game was all it took to bring out her natural talent. Since then, she hasn’t looked back, with her can-do attitude and punishing training schedule, training six times a week, she achieved her goal of making the Black Ferns in 2002.
Since then, she has represented New Zealand at the 2002 World Cup in Barcelona, Spain, the 2006 World Cup in Edmonton, Canada, and the 2010 World Cup in London, England and in 2015 was named as captain of the Black Ferns for the inaugural 2015 Women's Rugby Super Series held in Canada.
She has previously played a stint of rugby in Newcastle, England, 2007-2008, which was something she had wanted to do before joining Police
Fiao’o graduated from Police College in June 2010 and was posted to her home patch of South Auckland. She isn’t just slaying on the field, since joining the force she has been promoted to detective status with the Counties Manukau Police sector, the side of town where she formerly worked as a postie before joining the police force.
“I always wanted to go back there, because I have always wanted to give back to the community I grew up in, and through my job as a police officer I feel I can achieve this.”
To add to her achievements, in 2011 Fiao’o Faamausili, became the recipient of the New Zealand Police Association Police Sportsperson of the Year award.
“We have to lead by example and show the young ones that they can achieve their goals if they are prepared to put in the hard work. I think this is the best thing we can do for them.”
To reinforce the message, Fiao’o speaks at school ceremonies and sports awards around South Auckland. She went back to Aorere College with fellow hooker All Black Keven Mealamu to present awards to high-achieving students in 2012.
“It’s about pushing the young ones through, and being there for them, like other people were there for me when I was coming through,” she says.
Fiao’o says her biggest influence on her rugby career was her Dad, he was my No.1 supporter. He passed away in 2001 and that made me push harder to become the rugby player I am today.
The World Rugby Awards awards kick off this Sunday 13 November in London. Fiao’o Faamausili is up against 2 other nominees, Gaelle Mignot from France and Sarah Hunter from England.