New Zealand names its 2020 INVICTUS Games Team

The New Zealand Defence Force has named its team to compete at the Invictus Games in The Netherlands next year.

FILE PHOTO: Major Kiely Pepper, who has been named in the New Zealand Defence Force Invictus Games team to compete in The Netherlands next year, competing in the 2018 Games in Sydney. NZDF photo.

The 22-strong NZDF travelling team comprises nine women and 13 men, and all but six members are currently serving.

A further four competitors have been named as reserves.

Deputy Chief of Army Brigadier Evan Williams, who is Head of Mission, congratulated those selected and said those who had been to previous games described the experience as life changing for them and their families.

“It is the positive and unique culture of the New Zealand team, the collective shared experience and the opportunity to share their stories and experiences with their mates, not only from within their own team but those from other nations,” Brigadier Williams said.

“Invictus delivers on so many levels, and our people are the better for it, through the opportunity to participate and achieve in front of their teammates, friends and families.”

Brigadier Williams said he attended the inaugural Invictus Games, in London in 2014, and had been an avid follower since.

“What has impressed me over the past five years is the development that the concept has undergone, without losing sight of the original vision,” he said.

“It’s more about participation than performance, and it’s about the competitors and their families and friends.”

The NZDF team is:
Sergeant Tomina Apiti, Flight Sergeant Stacey Adam, Carl Booty, Lance Bombardier Ryan Buchanan, Flight Sergeant Michael Cotton, Stevin Creeggan, Staff Sergeant Jared Davidson, Able Communications Warfare Specialist Paulette Doctor, Melissa Hansen, Corporal William Keene, Lance Corporal Ricky Kenmare, Captain Buffy Little, Flight Sergeant Andrea McNabb, Chief Petty Officer Combat Systems Specialist Quintin Monk, Staff Sergeant Robert Pearce, Ben Peckham, Major Kiely Pepper, Sergeant Daphne Pringle, Warrant Officer Class 1 Jason Rapana, Chief Petty Officer Logistics Supply Specialist David Sanderson, Bronwyn Shaw, Sonny Te Rure.

Reserves: Warrant Officer Leigh Gurney, Steve Limbrick, George Nepata, Staff Sergeant Thomas Lindsay.

INVICTUS Games is an adaptive sport event created by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, to harness the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate understanding and respect for wounded, injured or ill current and former servicemen and women.

The Invictus Games The Hague 2020, from 9-15 May, will involve 500 competitors from 19 allied nations competing in 10 different adaptive sports.

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Brian Hartigan

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