HOCKEY development in the Borders is continuing its path to success with the next generation of young players breaking through to international level.
Junior players Morven Cawthorn (Selkirk High School and Fjordhus Reivers), Lucy Inglis (Earlston High School and Fjordhus Reivers) and Kirsty Millar (Berwickshire High School and Fjordhus Reivers) have all been selected to represent Scotland at the under-16 level after a recent training session at Stirling.
In the coming year, the girls will play training games in Amsterdam and against Ulster, and will also play in international matches against England, Ireland, Wales, Germany and Holland.
And, according to former international player and Borders coach Janet Jack, their inclusion in the squad is a well deserved result of their commitment to their training and attitude on and off the pitch.
Jack, who has been involved in coaching all three girls, told TheSouthern: “I totally believe it comes down to the attitude of the players and their fierce determination to succeed.
“They never make excuses for themselves – if things don’t work out, they seek help and train harder and stronger.
“They have their targets set and know what they have to do reach them.”
All three girls train and play a weekly for the Tweedbank-based Fjordhus Reivers club and their schools, as well as attending the Borders Performance fitness and skills sessions weekly. They are all athletes in their own right, coming out regularly in the top percentage of girls in their fitness tests in this age group.
Jack added: “They all work very hard at their performance skills sessions and are responsible for their own learning, demanding more of themselves at every session.”
This recent trio of success stories follow Emily Newlands (Selkirk High School and Fjordhus Reivers), Claire Hill (Kelso High School and Watsonians) and Lucy Ramsay Hill (Kelso High School and Watsonians), who are currently training regularly with the Under-18 Scottish Squad.
Newlands, at the age of 16, has been recognised as a player with real talent by the Scottish selectors and is already training part-time with the Scottish Under-21 squad and the senior women’s team, while Claire Hill is also involved in sessions with the older age group.
The Borders is currently producing a crop of very talented hockey stars, with Sarah Robertson (ex-Fjordhus Reivers and Selkirk High School), recently returning from the junior Olympic Games in Sydney with a bronze medal after representing Team GB.
Robertson has already made it into the top flight of Scottish hockey, having represented her country on three occasions last year, and is now considering taking a year out of her law studies at Edinburgh University so that she can concentrate on her bid to make the Scotland team for the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games.
There are development squads running weekly at under-12s, under-13s and under-14s in the Borders, all producing junior players, equally capable of achieving the success of their elders.