Hi from Belgium! So we are at the back end of the tournament... the business end! Tomorrow, we will take on the Netherlands in the Semi Final. The team is excited, these big games are the reason why we play hockey. The pressure, atmosphere, and quality of the game is always lifted in a semi, and it’s within our complete control to decide how we show up.
Today was a recovery day, where we all make sure that physically and mentally, we are putting ourselves in the best position to turn up tomorrow in the best form possible. We had the morning off, where the girls spent time getting physio treatment, resting, using our Normatec machine (which is a form of compression on the legs), and scouting the opposition. We have a room set up with a lot of computers, where we analyse the game footage and discuss what our game plan will be for tomorrow’s game.
This afternoon, we headed off to the turf for a light training, finalising some key work on areas and getting a bit of movement in the legs. Followed by meetings tonight, and dinner, we will be set to wake up tomorrow refreshed and ready to take on the Dutch.
It’s been over three weeks since we arrived in Europe, playing 4 warm up games in Spain and 5 tournament games here in Belgium and the team is gelling really well.
A lot of our time is spent in our hotel rooms resting, because we need to ensure we save everything for our games. Often people ask what it’s like travelling around the world for hockey. They assume we must see a lot of the countries that we are in given we are away for so long. Apart from the bus rides and occasional outing, we don’t get to see many things that tourists would! That’s the not so glamorous side of it, but the amazing part is we get to play against the top teams in the world and represent New Zealand playing the sport we all love, with an amazing bunch of people. Now that’s pretty cool!
Set your alarms, folks, 4am Sunday morning NZT on Sky Sport is when the Semi goes down! We would love your support :)