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News for 27 March 2018

All the news for Tuesday 27 March 2018

Sjoerd Marijne’s India have task cut out

India will face their biggest challenge from Australia who have won all men’s hockey titles at the Commonwealth Games in past editions

B Shrikant

The Indian men’s national hockey team will face a stiff challenge from Australia at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games 2018.(PTI)

Having won the men’s hockey title five out of five times in Commonwealth Games, it would be an understatement to say that Australia have dominated the sport. And, given their form, it is unlikely any team will be able to challenge them for a sixth title.

Sjoerd Marijne-coached India are the second-highest ranked team in the event but upstaging the Kookaburras will be easier said than done. To add to India’s woes, they are in a tough group with the likes of England, Pakistan and Malaysia.


Both England and Pakistan are tricky customers and can cause an upset. With only the top two teams from each pool qualifying for the last-four stage, one bad match can hinder a team’s chances of progressing to the knockout stage. Thus India, a mixture of experience and youth, will have to be at their best to add gold to the two silver won in 2010 and 2014. Hockey made its Commonwealth Games debut at Kuala Lumpur in 1998. For India, Gold Coast will be the testing ground for tougher challenges ahead, such as the Asian Games in Indonesia — the qualifying event for the 2020 Olympic Games, the Champions Trophy at Breda, Netherlands in June and the World Cup in Bhubaneswar in November-December.


Hockey form sentiments, Sardar and Singh. India not as given evident has gone precedence in by the current axing to of a few The youngsters team management on the New has Zealand tested tour and Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia and picked a side they think can do the job in Gold Coast. “Commonwealth Games may not be our priority but the Indian team always plays to win and this time too it will not be different,” said Marijne.


Manpreet Singh: In the absence of Sardar Singh, the skipper will have to shoulder greater responsibility and be the fulcrum in the midfield. Manpreet has to be steady and needs to control his players as they tend to lose focus towards the end.

Harmanpreet Singh: The 22-year-old drag flicker is developing into a vital cog in the backline and will have to be consistent while taking penalty corners and also in defence.

SV Sunil: Indian forwards have lacked consistency for the last many years and, as the most experienced player up front, SV Sunil will have to lead from the front.

Hindustan Times

Expect the best from us: Manpreet

‘Focus on fitness which is the main ingredient in modern hockey’

Vijay Lokapally

Manpreet Singh 

Captain Manpreet Singh does not promise resurgence of Indian hockey but there is an air of assurance when he spells out the confidence that the team carries to the Commonwealth Games.

“It’s a big event and we are prepared. It’s a very important phase in our pursuit and I can tell fans of Indian hockey to expect the best from us,” he said on the eve of the team’s departure for Gold Coast.

For Manpreet what matters is the preparation. “It’s been hard and serious. Fitness has been the focus because it’s the main ingredient in modern hockey. We are not underestimating any opposition and know how important consistency is.”

A key resolve made by the team is not to make silly mistakes. “We have to cut down on earning card punishments. We have to avoid needless defensive structure and reduce conceding penalty corners as much as possible. It can be done. We should not do needless tackling inside the circle. Tackling should be outside the circle as much as possible.”

On area where the team has improved a lot, observed Manpreet, was penalty-corner conversion. “We have improved considerably in drag-flicking. It’s a work in process but, believe me, we have improved a lot. The best things is we are playing as a team and not depending on individual brilliance. It is no more about just participation. We play to win.”

With opponents like Australia, England, New Zealand and Malaysia to tackle, Manpreet hoped to raise the team’s game. “We are going there well ahead of the tournament to get acclimatised. Getting into the competitive mode is critical for the side. We have to avail the opportunities that come our way,” said Manpreet.

The Hindu

‘We’re Ready’: Indian Men’s Hockey Team Look to Win First CWG Gold

In the five editions of the Commonwealth Games that hockey has been a part of, India has won two silver medals but never a gold. But this time round, the Indian men are hoping to change that at the Gold Coast Games, scheduled to start on 4 April.

Leading the team at the prestigious quadrennial games for the first time, midfielder Manpreet Singh said: “The players are ready for Commonwealth Games because this is really important for us. It’s good that all the players are really focused because this is a crucial tournament and everyone is going to want to win”.

India’s Pool B Matches at 2018 CWG

India vs Pakistan: 7 April
India vs Wales: 8 April
India vs Malaysia: 10 April
India vs England: 11 April

Clubbed in Pool B with Pakistan, Wales, Malaysia and England, the Indian hockey team will open their campaign with a match against ‘arch-rivals’ Pakistan on 7 April. While the India-Pakistan rivalry is one of the fiercest in the sport, senior defender and penalty corner specialist Rupinder Pal Singh said: “As sportspersons, it’s a normal game for us. We’ll prepare ourselves like we do for other teams and will do our best.

We’re not looking at any one team differently. All the participating teams are strong like Australia, England and Malaysia. They are going to give their best because Commonwealth Games is a big event, so we too have to give our best. We have to take whatever chances we get and convert them into a gold.
    Manpreet Singh, Captain, Indian Men’s Hockey Team

World champions Australia (World No 1), along with Netherlands (World No 4), are the only two teams ranked higher than India at the Commonwealth Games this year. In fact, the Aussies have won gold in every edition of the tournament that the sport was included.

“We won silver last time after losing to Australia. This time, we want to change the colour of the medal. Last time we lost to Australia so we will try out best to defeat them this time,” said Manpreet.

On paper, if you compare practice sessions, then we are definitely one of the prime teams in the tournament. But it’s all about that day. Like in the Azlan Shah Cup, we lost to Ireland.
    PR Sreejesh, Goalkeeper, Indian Men’s Hockey Team

“In a tournament, you need to perform well in each and every match. So everything depends on our performance. We’re in good shape now and we are confident enough to perform really well. So the ultimate task for us is to win the tournament,” he added.

Sreejesh’s CWG Challenges

The upcoming Commonwealth Games will be senior goalkeeper PR Sreejesh’s first major tournament since returning from a serious injury. The 29-year-old had been out of action for almost 8 months after suffering a medial collateral ligament (MCL) injury during the Azlan Shah tournament in 2017.

The goalkeeper – who will be supported by the young Suraj Karkera during India’s campaign at Gold Coast – said that the two major CWG challenges for him as a senior player were read the situation and bringing out the best from the team.

In Commonwealth Games, the added pressure is different. Being a senior player, it is my duty to make sure that the pressure doesn’t affect the team. Youngsters have to be guided and told to concentrate on their business rather than what is going on around you or what the newspaper and media is carrying.
    PR Sreejesh, Goalkeeper, Indian Men’s Hockey Team

“Second, there will be tough times in a big competition that even smaller teams can cause in a negative way. So you need to guide players in appropriate times and get the best performance out of them,” he added.

We wish the Indian men’s hockey team all the best for 2018 Commonwealth Games!

The Quint

Robinson to replace Jopp on Gold Coast

Amy Robinson is going to the Gold Coast

Midfielder Tessa Jopp has been withdrawn from the New Zealand Commonwealth Games team for medical reasons.

The 22-year old will be replaced by Taurangas Amy Robinson, who has played 45 tests for New Zealand.

"Im hugely disappointed for Tessa as she has been training and playing well in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games, but I fully support the decision that the medical team has made," said head coach Mark Hager.

"Our top priority is Tessas welfare and we ask for people to please respect her privacy on this matter.

"We look forward to welcoming Amy to the team and seeing what she can deliver come games time."

The New Zealand Women open their Commonwealth Games campaign against Scotland at 1:30pm (NZ time) on Thursday 5th April.

Hockey New Zealand Media release

USWNT Using 2018 Progress as Mindset for Chile Series

LANCASTER, Pa. – Spooky Nook Sports is beginning preparations for the U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Chile, presented by Citi, test series taking place April 9-14 in Lancaster, Pa. The series is also just eight months removed from USA’s last match on the Home of Hockey’s pitch, an emotional contest against the very same Chile squad that sunk the USWNT’s hopes of a gold medal at the 2017 women’s Pan American Cup (PAC).

The warm August evening and surrounding crowd witnessed a hard fought 60 minute battle on both ends of the field. Tied 3-3 in the final minute of play, Chile made one last offensive press and after penetrating the circle, netted the go-ahead goal, knocking off the red, white and blue in the PAC Semifinal match and into the bronze medal game against Canada.

Despite the heartbreaking loss to their upcoming foe, USA is focused on the present, as well as their more recent international matches, as preparation continues for the test series and beyond.

“It’s great to have Chile visit us and play them in a four-game series," said Janneke Schopman, USWNT Head Coach. "The last two games we played them were both closely contested. Being a South American team, they play with a lot of noise and passion, which will give us the opportunity to show our growth from the last training block in a highly competitive atmosphere.”

USWNT veteran and midfielder Michelle Vittese (Cherry Hill, N.J.) echoed the team’s mentality post-PAC. Since hitting the ground running in early 2018 in test series against The Netherlands and Canada, the athletes have taken note to the growth of the team. Whether it’s a good or bad day on the pitch, the mentality has been taking every day as a learning experience in preparation for the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup London in July.

“It’s more like moving forward and growth, building on the last couple months of training and seeing how that is going to play out in game-situations,” said Vittese. “It’s a really good test for us playing Chile and playing in a home environment where we are learning to deal with the professionalism like being in an environment where there are distractions. These are really good skills we have to learn to do moving forward, especially at the World Cup.”

Prior to the USA-Chile match in the PAC Semifinals, the two squads met one month prior in the opening pool play game of the FIH Hockey World League Semifinals in Johannesburg, South Africa. Like their eventual semifinal meet up in Lancaster, Pa., the match was heavily contested with the lone goal in the contest coming from Jill (Witmer) Funk (Lancaster, Pa.) off of a centering pass by Vittese in the third quarter.

Expect similar results when the two nations square off in just two weeks from now.

Don’t miss a minute of action of this four-game test series! Tickets for the U.S. Women's National Team vs. Chile, presented by Citi, series are still on sale. Single game tickets start at $14 to sit in Section D (farthest from the center of the pitch), $16 for Section C and $18 for seats in Section B (closest to the center). Youth (age 17 and under) and Active Duty Military tickets will be available for 50 percent off the normal single ticket prices.

There will be an option to purchase a full series pass starting at $25 for children under 18, senior citizens and military, and $50 for adults. To purchase tickets, click here.

Can’t make it to the pitch? Catch all games by watching the live stream at usafieldhockey.com. You can also re-watch each game of the series the same night played at 10:00 p.m. ET on Pennsylvania Cable Network (PCN). Pennsylvania viewers can watch on cable (check your local cable guide for channel listing) and fans around the world can watch from anywhere with a PCN Select subscription.

Click here to visit the U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Chile, presented by Citi, serie event page.

USFHA media release

Racing finally hitting full fitness for Dinamo Kazan showdown

©: Frank Uijlenbroek/world Sport Pics

Royal Racing Club de Bruxelles’ rising star Augustin Meurmans says his club are finally getting their full panel together this season as injuries and unavailability have abounded.

Meurmans is one of the brightest talents in Belgian hockey right now, bursting onto the international scene in 2017, playing 31 times for the Red Lions since then, winning a European silver medal in the process, having been a Junior World Cup player in 2016.

He joined Racing three years ago from childhood club Lara and says the move has helped elevate his game quickly to such a high level.

“Teams like Dragons, Racing and Waterloo Ducks are teams you desire to play for as a kid coming from a smaller club like Lara. So I couldn’t say no when they proposed for me to join the team in 2015.

“The EHL is the highest level club competition in the world so it is always a pleasure and a privilege to be able to represent Racing on the European scene.

“2017 was indeed a really successful year for me and I had the chance to play in the European cup in Amsterdam. It is, right know, my biggest achievement in hockey.

“I really enjoy playing and training with the Belgium National Team. Every training is a new challenge and an opportunity to get better.

“It means a lot for me to play with the Red Lions. I’ve always wanted to play with them since a was a kid and be able to represent my country on the international scene is an honour.”

With Racing, Meurmans feels the side is finally in good shape for their bid to reach the FINAL4 for a second time, starting off on Friday afternoon against Dinamo Kazan (17.45 CET) with the hope of meeting the winner of Royal Herakles or Atletic Terrassa.

“We have been training really well these last weeks,” he told the EHL website. “This is the first time this season we have the whole squad training. We have had a lot of injuries but now everybody is ready to give it their all at the EHL.”

Indeed, it has translated into a mixed bag since they returned outdoors after an excellent indoor campaign, winning their third successive Belgian title and a European club silver.

Outdoors, they lost to both Royal Leopold and Dragons while drawing with lowly KHC Leuven but did bounce back to record an important win over Oree last Sunday to stay in the top four in Belgium.

As for the challenge of Kazan, he previously encountered the Russian Under-21s before but this is his only experience against a team from that part of the world.

“Other experienced guys in the team like Tom Boon, Cédric Charlier and Jérôme Truyens have played against Russian oppositions before and they always highlight their fighting spirit. That’s why I expect a really hard fight against them.”

Euro Hockey League media release

Scheefer looking to go out on a high with Racing Club de France

©: Frank Uijlenbroek/world Sport Pics

Racing Club de France made it 12 wins from 12 on Sunday when they won 3-0 at FC Lyon courtesy of two goals from Christopher Peters-Deutz and one from Jean-Laurent Kieffer.

It is marking the perfect final season for Francois Scheefer before he moves to Bordeaux which he hopes will stand his side in good shape for their EHL KO16 clash with Uhlenhorst Mulheim.

The towering defender, though, says Rotterdam will be a whole other level as they bid to match their run to the KO8 from 12 months ago.

“When it comes to the EHL, it gets way more complicated obviously!” he told the EHL website. “We are well aware that we are the underdogs in this picture but we take this challenge with pleasure and we will make the most out of it!”

Like most clubs around Europe, the recent weather has meant training has been curtailed at times. Their game with CA Montrouge was pushed back to April but they have won healthily against both Lille and Lyon since the league’s return. They also have had a couple of small injuries to add to the absence of Simon Martin-Brisac who is out for the season with a cruciate injury.

“Oiur panel is definitely not in the best health but I believe we can achieve great things with this team.

“In terms of what we are achieving at the moment in the French league, 12 from 12, I would lie if I said I wasn't be happy. But we all know the French league is of no comparison to the EHL, especially facing our future opponents.

“We try to keep both feet on the ground and focus on the German side, which is going to be a whole other story. In a single game, whoever the opponent is, if we defend hard, everything is possible.”

To that end, a German cameraman – presumed to be from Mulheim – appeared at their game against Lille unexpectedly. Scheefer, though, is not too concerned that they will have learned too much from that outing.

“Luckily the game was our first after the winter break, so we didn't show anything! Especially when we saw this dude in the camera tower, we kept all of our good skills to ourselves!

“To be honest, we were told at the end of the game that someone was there to film us. Oh well, it's all part of it... But I am curious about the debriefing that the videoman might have given to the team's coach. It would make me very happy if they are misinformed about us!”

Racing have been making huge strides in recent years and are targeting a fourth successive French title. Last year, they battled to a draw against Banbridge in the KO16 before falling to Dragons in the KO8.

“Making the KO8 last season was absolutely amazing for us. We, a small club from France, being able to play in the big guy’s playground was a great achievement and memory.

“Of course drawing against the Irish was a bit different than this year because we knew we had a good chance to break through but we are so proud to make it in the European club top 8!”

As for this being his last campaign with RCF, he admits it will be emotional. It is his fifth EHL campaign, playing two with CA Montrouge and three with RCF, while he also played in the old format of the European Cup, including one with Reading.

“It will be most likely my last international campaign – my 10th and 11th EHL games – after 175 official caps with French national team.

“So I'm pretty sure I will be a bit emotional at the end but I will work my heart out to make this game count! And like an anthem in my heart, I must lead by example. Last but not least, I will do anything in my power to lead this team towards great achievements.”

Euro Hockey League media release

Another weekend of great Scottish hockey

Scottish League Division 1 match – Kelburne v Grove Menzieshill

Bromac Kelburne, in their quest for a 14th consecutive first division league title, were held to a 3-3 intense draw by third placed Grove Menzieshill at Glasgow Green. The result means that the champions now have a five point lead over Grange but with a game more played.

The first half was a rather tedious affair although Kelburne survive three consecutive Menzieshill penalty corners.  However, it was the champions who took the lead with seven minutes left in the first half, Jack McKenzie won the penalty corner, Josh Cairns` low drag flick was blocked but Michael Christie buried the rebound.

Within a minute of the restart, the Taysiders were level when the Kelburne defence was caught napping and Cameron Golden taking advantage.

However, only a minute had elapsed before the Paisley side were in front again, Michael Christie sent the ball into the circle for Ben Peterson to send a reverse stick deflection into the roof of the net.

Only two minutes later, the Dundonians restored parity at 2-2, a stick chop by Craig Morton earned them a penalty and Albert Rowling obliged from the spot.

Kelburne then took the lead for the third time with a high drag flick by Cairns at a penalty corner. However, the champions were unable to hold on to the lead when Paul Martin was left unmarked in the circle and duly equalised.

It was a good weekend for Hillhead beating Dundee Wanderers 3-2 and advanced from ninth to seventh in the table.   The Glasgow side went ahead through a great goal from Michael Sherry but then found themselves 2-1 down to the Taysiders. Strikes by Andrew Black and Andrew Hilton for the winner ensured that Hillhead took six points from this weekend`s double header. However, Wanderers now slip back to ninth in the table and emersed in the relegation play-off zone.

Uddingston also advanced their cause with a 6-3 win over Inverleith in Edinburgh, the catalyst was Brad Hughes with four goals while Paul Council got two.   Murray Fotheringham and Graham Batchelor replied for the Edinburgh side in the first half with Tom Barton scoring after the interval.

In the women`s first division Dundee Wanderers moved back into fifth place following a 3-0 win at Hillhead – they are now a point ahead of Watsonians.   There were open play goals from Amy Snelle and Jess Ross while Emily Dark`s strike came from a penalty corner.

Scottish League Division 1 match – Hillhead v Dundee Wanderers

For more information about results and fixtures, click HERE

Scottish Hockey Union media release

A first-class delivery for Sutton Coldfield’s volunteer hockey coach

By Rod Gilmour

Dave O’Brien, who works as a Royal Mail postman alongside his tireless hockey volunteering, is telling a Jane Sixsmith anecdote, one of many no doubt recounted in the Midlands area where the Olympian is revered as a true sporting great.

It came during a routine training session, when the former Great Britain forward asked O’Brien, by no means a hockey specialist, for his opinion on certain Sutton Coldfield HC players.

“You’re Jane Sixsmith, and you’re asking me?” countered a surprised O’Brien, who then asked her why she had sought a response. “She said that anyone who has a passion she always asked, even though she may not agree,” recalled O’Brien. “Really, you couldn’t meet a more humble, genuine person.”

It was Sixsmith who then encouraged O’Brien to branch out as a volunteer coach on his own at a nearby school, Oasis Academy Short Heath in Birmingham, where his committed skills have been rightly recognised.

He may not actively seek public attention, but as the season closes – where he has no doubt influenced more kids to take up sport – let’s give him some anyway.

O’Brien, who describes himself as a ‘committed, passionate’ volunteer, used to be a level 2 cricket coach, but two bad experiences at local clubs thrust him into the world of hockey.

He starts work at 5am, six days a week at Royal Mail. With early finishes, it means he can return home for a swift change of clothes before focusing on his volunteering work, which stretches to six days a week.

He assists with Sutton Coldfield’s under-10 side, videos the Ladies’ first team home fixtures, oversees weeknight training for four other sides and umpires the Badgers’ sides at weekends.

The double workload can be tiring, but not when O’Brien sees kids far from downtrodden when it is raining or a cold front sets in.

Oasis, though, is where his selfless work on the school playground shines through. “The school is in an area designated as high deprivation and I usually get 24 kids, a mix of year five and six boys and girls all abilities and disabilities,” he said.

“I have been humbled by the feedback from the headteacher, Michelle, telling me how two kids with severe behavioural problems have been transformed by their increasing involvement in hockey and sport in general.”

The school was so lacking in equipment that O’Brien was forced to send off emails to Investec and England Hockey asking for help.

He was left “in tears” at the response, which included signed hockey sticks from the GB women’s team, while the school became the first recipient of the Birmingham Council-led initiative Reclaim Sport, where old sports’ kit is recycled for community projects. Meanwhile, the signed stick went to auction and it paid for new shin pads and team kit.

“I know what sport has done for me as I didn’t have a straightforward home life either,” O’Brien added of his work with the Oasis schoolchildren.

Furthermore, such has been Sutton Coldfield’s rise in junior membership that O’Brien has been in touch with Streetly HC, close to Oasis School, with the club offering seven weeks of free hockey as a taster. Sutton Coldfield’s junior set up is now over 270 members, whereas pre-London 2012 it was below 90.

“I don’t do this for the ego,” added the 53-year-old. He simply does it for the passion.

The Hockey Paper

Danson & Investec among nominees for 2018 #BeAGameChanger Awards

Danson Goal v Arg Rio 2016

England and Great Britain’s Alex Danson has been shortlisted for the ‘Sporting Role Model – Individual’ category ahead of the 2018 #BeAGameChanger Awards which will be hosted by the Women’s Sport Trust in May.

It is the second consecutive year Danson has been nominated for the award – finishing in the top three in 2017 – and comes at the end of a remarkable twelve months for the forward.

Since last year’s ceremony she has been named captain of her England and Great Britain up to and including this year’s Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup, scored her 100th international goal, moved up to second on the combined all-time list of English and British women goalscorers and brought up her 100th cap for Great Britain, amongst other achievements.

She is also set to win her 300th international appearance at the upcoming Commonwealth Games and could win two major titles before the year is out, starting at the event in the Gold Coast before taking on the very best at the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup between 21 July – 5 August at the Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre.

Furthermore she has also launched her own academy with the aim of getting children aged 7-11 engaged with hockey and has already begun the process of introducing sessions into 500 primary schools and hosting 100 camps across the country.

Investec – the Principle Partner of GB and England Women’s Hockey – have also been rewarded for the continued support they show to our sport by being named in the shortlist for ‘Brand/Sponsor Partnership’. This comes shortly after they launched their new #TogetherAsOne video, which can be watched here.

TeamUp have also received recognition for the fantastic work they do by being selected in the shortlist for the ‘Inspiring Initiative – National’ category.

Each category will now be whittled down to a smaller group by an expert panel, with the finalists being announced on 30 April. There will then be a period of two weeks in which the public will get to vote for their favourite before the winners are announced at the award ceremony on 24 May. You can see the full list of nominees here.

England Hockey Board Media release

Townsend in training: Learning to accept myself

From a young age most of us have been lucky enough to travel the world playing a sport we love but as you get older it does start to take it’s toll on the mind and body. What follows is my view, my own personal opinion, and it offers an insight into how I have changed as a player and a person.

It’s incredible to be able to play for my country. In the concise words of England teammate Ellie Rayer: “It’s just really cool…”.

I love being an international hockey player and everything that comes with it but it’s true to say sometimes I do find some things a little bit difficult. I am human and I have emotions like everyone else. I have now learnt to allow myself to be more open with my feelings instead of hiding them. I can’t believe I once saw this openness as a weakness… its exhausting always pretending everything is ok.

Of course I accept that I signed up to be away from home for long periods of time but as I get older I find it harder being away. It isn’t that I don’t love travelling for hockey – it’s amazing travelling all over the world playing a sport you love with your mates – and I know I am very fortunate, but it is still tough.

There are a number of reasons for feeling this way but a main factor is that I feel more settled with my life and more content with who I am than I have done previously. I am much more comfortable with being Susannah Townsend the person who also plays some hockey, not just Susannah Townsend the hockey player.

I think the lack of recognising the person behind the player was a big reason I loved being away so much. My identity for so many years has been about me being a hockey player. If I’m honest, I loved it and everything that came with it. It made me feel special but I found myself always being ‘the hockey player’ instead of sometimes just allowing myself to be me.

In sport, just as in any other workplace, there is a way people expect you to behave. If this changes people start to analyse you and look for a reason but sometimes there isn’t a reason and that’s ok. There doesn’t always need to be a reason and I have now come to accept that.

A year ago I met someone for a coffee. I walked in as ‘Susannah the athlete’ which disappointed the person I was meeting as they had wanted to get to know the real me. Later, they admitted this disappointment.

I needed someone to point this out as I had no idea this was the way I was coming across. I walked out and felt disappointed in myself as I knew deep down I had more to give than just being the athlete. It was tough for me to hear but I knew how true it was and it made me want to be me regardless whether people liked that or not.

When I received my 100th combined cap in Rio I thanked my team for allowing me to be me, imperfections and all. It is something we believe at England hockey – as a team, if we are honest with each other and show compassion and support we can all help each other be the best versions of ourselves.

I am at a stage in my life now where I don’t have that long left of my playing career. This is a daunting prospect and something I will touch on in a later blog. I hope to have another Olympics in me and then I will see what happens. I have made a promise to myself to enjoy it for as long as I can and keep enjoying the journey. I accept that it’s ok to be vulnerable and I think that helps the people around me get the best out of me too.

FIH site

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