New Zealand women's sevens player Ruby Tui has been ruled out of the Commonwealth Games after being diagnosed with mumps, a viral illness which can cause swelling and tenderness of one or more salivary glands.
The 26-year-old, who returned to Aotearoa on Monday after being hospitalised in Brisbane for a week, was farewelled by her team with a haka.
The team spoke to media for the first time yesterday after living for a week in isolation in Brisbane and arriving on the Gold Coast on Monday.
Captain Portia Woodman says despite the loss of the team's "most energetic player" they are even more determined heading into their first matches against Kenya and South Africa on Friday.
The line-up brings young talent into the women's squad, with 19-year-old Alena Saili replacing Tui.
Tui and the team have been cleared of any more cases of mumps. However, the team has not yet been admitted to enter the Athlete's Village for health and safety reasons and five players are still being monitored for low blood immunity.
This is the first year the women's sevens rugby team has represented New Zealand at the games.