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Hockeyroos out for Trans-Tasman redemption at FIH Pro League

15 March 2019

HOCKEY: The Hockeyroos and Kookaburras have world class double-headers at Sydney Olympic Park this weekend, with both the men and women taking on Argentina on Saturday and arch-rivals New Zealand on Sunday in the FIH Pro League.

The new tournament launched this year sees the top nine hockey nations in the world compete in a round-robin tournament that stretches over the year, giving fans more opportunities to see their teams in action.

Hockeyroo co-captain Jodie Kenny is excited to take the field in front of home fans, particularly in Sunday’s game against New Zealand.

“It’s always a big battle against the Kiwis,” she said. “After the Rio Olympics where they knocked us out, then beat us in the Commonwealth Games final, there’s quite a rivalry.

“We love playing against them it’s such a good fight and an exciting match.”

Kenny will be running out alongside goalkeeper Rachael Lynch who will celebrate her 200th game in the green and gold in Saturday’s match against Argentina.

“It will be such an amazing experience, for a goalkeeper to hit 200 games is incredible, it’s like an outfield player reaching 400 caps,” Kenny said.

“She’s amazing and she deserves all the accolades. I’m really excited to step out on the field with Rach and get around her to help get the win.

“We didn’t win my 200th game [in 2018], but that happens in hockey - hopefully we’ll be on top with our home crowd getting around us.”

Kenny has had an incredible return to the game since taking time off in 2017 to have her son Harry. She was crowned Hockeyoo of the Year in 2018 after ending the year as the team’s leading goal scorer.

“It’s been hard yakka getting back but it’s worth it,” she said.

“While it’s hard, it is possible to balance a family with elite sport and it’s so rewarding. Having a supportive family is so huge and having a team that loves it helps so much– the girls love him, they’ve all accepted Harry as a little Hockeyroo which is really special.”

Kookaburras forward Dylan Wotherspoon is keen to build on a successful 2018, which included Commonwealth Games and Champions Trophy gold.

“2018 was a huge year for us, and 2019 is about continuing to build on that and make sure everything clicks in the run up to Tokyo 2020,” he said.

“The FIH Pro League has been a great start to the year - I’ve loved travelling round Australia to play in front of family and friends with the FIH Pro League.

“It’s an international double-header this weekend and the whole team will be up and about.

“The Trans-Tasman battle is always there. New Zealand play very aggressive, very fast and strong. We play a similar game so we’ll be going head to head, strength on strength, it will be a great challenge.”

You can catch all the action at Sydney Olympic Park, get your tickets HERE.

Dom Sullivan

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