Selkirk hockey star Sarah picks up her first senior caps

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SELKIRK’S Sarah Robertson is celebrating after receiving her first senior international call-up to the Scotland women’s hockey team at the age of 18.

The former Selkirk High School pupil has already competed at under-16, under-18 and under-21 level and this week she’s turning out for her first caps against Olympic hopefuls South Africa in two games (yesterday and Saturday) of a five-test series.

Robertson has been training with Gordon Shepherd’s senior squad over the last five months and is delighted that she is getting the chance to step up so soon.

She told TheSouthern: “It is an honour to be picked to represent my country at whatever age group, but these will be my biggest games so far. Hopefully, I can put in a strong performance to represent the hard work I have put in over the last five months in the senior squad.”

The Scots will be without their four Great Britain players, while the South Africans will be in peak condition as they enter the latter stages of their preparation for the London games.

The games are the first stage in Scotland’s build-up for the first round of the inaugural World League and then Champions Challenge in Italy in the summer.

Robertson added: “Scottish Hockey is using this year as a development year for younger players to move up, as I have done, along with three others, so we will be looking to use these matches to prove ourselves.

“Due to the South Africans playing in the Olympics this year they will have been training hard and will prove strong opposition, so I know the matches will be very tough, but I am privileged to play such a strong team for my first cap.”

A former member of the Borders Fjordhus hockey squad, Robertson now attends the University of Edinburgh. She is a member of the Scottish Borders Athlete Support Programme (ASP), where skills coach Janet Jack and strength and conditioning coach Stuart Paton always speak very highly of her in their reports.

ASP manager Gregor Nicholson added: “Sarah is a model athlete and an inspiration to others.”

z Elsewhere, four young Borderers, Emily Newlands, Claire Hill, Lucy and Gina Ramsay, have been playing for Scotland U16s in a European tournament in Germany over the weekend.