Youngest captain ever in ANZ Premiership

By Taroi Black
Maia Wilson. Source: Gettys Images

Silver Ferns Shooter Maia Wilson becomes the youngest captain ever named in the ANZ Premiership.

The 23 year-old will lead the Northern Stars as they aim to win the premiership, which kicks off in April when they match up against the current champions Pulse.  

"I firstly was very excited but nervous at the same time. I guess I didn't expect this captaincy coming," Wilson says. 

Maia Wilson, a Stars foundation player, received the news from her head-coach Kiri Wills after a stellar performance in the 2020 season, both in the provincial competition and her international appearance in the black dress.

Wilson, who hails from Te Rarawa iwi, made 60 ANZ Premiership appearances for the Stars and netted 461 of her 513 shots at goal – a success rate of 90 percent. She’s made 17 Test appearances for the Silver Ferns after debuting against Jamaica in 2016.

"I have always been a leader in my own right but I have been happy to sit back behind some pretty amazing leaders myself."

Most experienced

While she is the youngest captain in the premiership, Anna Harrison, 37, who has come out of retirement, becomes the most experienced athlete in the premiership.

Harrison says, "she [Wilson] had to correct me the other day, I thought she was about 24 or 25 but no "I'm 23". It feels like she's been around forever." 

Wilson rose to stardom as a 17 year-old when she joined the Central Pulse before embarking on a five-year journey with the Stars. 

The Stars coach is also rapt Wilson reached her personal best in fitness ahead of the Silver Ferns selections at the end of the month.    

"She wants to bring those philosophies that Dame Noeline Taurua has instilled in her in the Silver Ferns. She wants to bring them back here [Stars] and we saw that last year", Wills says.