Well we came away with a bronze medal, not the colour we wanted but nonetheless pleased to qualify for Rio, the epitome of world hockey. We were at the World Hockey League Semi final for around three weeks, getting there only a week prior to the tournament.
Antwerp is a beautiful city and we stayed on the marina near some amazing restaurants and cafes. The layout of this tournament meant we had a hell of a lot of rest time, and we took that quite literally not watching an endless amount of TV series. It may look a lot more glamorous on social media… and don’t get me wrong we do some of the most amazing things, but majority is about recovery and therefore doing not a lot.
We had a really heavy training block leading into the World League but did not play our best hockey until the final game of the tournament against New Zealand. We now have 3 weeks off hockey and our final break before the Olympics. I cannot believe how close it is getting, and yet it has also been a long time coming. It is now the team who can get to the finish line the fastest in terms of improvement over the next year.
The next event on the schedule for the Hockeyroos is our national championships, which give all the top players a chance to prove themselves worthy of Australian selection. It is also a matter of which state in Australia will come out on top. After these 2 weeks in Sydney, the Oceania Cup will be played in New Zealand. We will be looking to defend our title before heading to World League 4 at the end of the year in Argentina.
The schedule does not get any lighter the following year and it is really exciting times as the Olympics draws closer. We have a lot of hard work to do between now and then but I am definitely looking forward to the challenge!