A big accomplishment for Parkes and its hockey fraternity – two of the city’s hockey veterans were selected by the Australian Australian Masters indoor hockey teams for the Indoor Masters World Cup in Hong Kong in February.
Goalkeepers Lee Hodge and Denise Gersbach were selected for Women in Goulburn after the first hockey Australia Indoor Masters Challenge on December 14 and 16.
Players from NSW, Queensland, ACT and Victoria were represented in the divisions over 40, 50 and 60. Parkes penetrated into a group in the over-40s and won the silver medal.
From this tournament Hockey Australia announced its Australian teams, which will compete for the World Cup in the age groups over 40, 45 and 50 years women as well as in the age groups over 40 and 50 years men.
Only last week Gersbach received the exciting news that she was appointed team leader of women’s ’45 women. She was Teammate Karen Seaman at the top.
Both Gersbach and Hodge have always played indoor hockey at the country level, and both are still pushing their national selection.
“I still can not believe it,” said Gersbach.
“I’m thrilled to have been selected by two Australian teams this year and selected by the over 45-year-old team to participate in the Trans Tasman Challenge in May on the Gold Coast and now the over 45-year-old Australian indoor team participate. “
Indoor hockey is a relatively new sport for Parkes. Gersbach began playing in 2009, when the city sent their first-master team to the NSW State Championship.
“However, since the age of five, I’ve been playing field hockey,” she said.
“I find indoor hockey much harder on the body than field hockey. Playing indoors in extreme heat is a challenge as we play our championships in the summer months.
“I love indoor hockey because you’re always defensive and involved in every game in the attack. I love the technique and structure of the indoor hockey. “Hodge has been playing indoor hockey for seven years.
“As a goalkeeper in outdoor hockey, you may not see much of the game in your circle, where, as in indoor hockey, you’re constantly being challenged to set up assault moves, due to the smaller playing area, the use of side boards and fewer players They are involved in stopping shots on goal, “she said.
“Every player in the courtroom is involved in attack and defense, and the game moves much faster than field hockey from end to end. So you really have no downtime. You must always be prepared to switch from attack mode to defense mode or vice versa. “
The duo plans to be the best they can have in February. “I would like to win a gold medal, but in the end I just want to be a valuable team member and play my best hockey,” said Gersbach.
“Since we do not host regular indoor competitions here in Parkes, my goal is to get as much playing time as possible and to gather as much knowledge from the coaches, my teammates and the opposition as possible. “Hodge said.
Gersbach and Hodge will travel to Hong Kong from 14 to 17 February. As soon as the World Cup is over, international representatives will not be given too much rest.
Gersbach intends to continue her training program in preparation for the Trans Tasman Challenge in May after her return.
“I’m also looking forward to developing the talented junior players in my local Rovers Hockey Club,” she said. While Hodge wants to prepare for the upcoming field hockey season.
“I have a goal to play Parkes at the Bathurst National Championships and bring NSW to justice to compete with Gold Coast citizens later in the year,” she said. Gersbach and Hodge would like to thank those who helped them get to their current hockey place.
“I want to recognize the contribution that David Mike made to the development of the indoor hockey in Parkes,” said Gersbach.
“David is a National and Australian coach and has been coaching our Parkes Hall team since 2010. “He was invaluable for my development as an indoor hockey player. He regularly visits Parkes to train and coach us.
“David will also take part in the World Cup in Hong Kong as coach of over-40s. “I’m delighted to share this World Cup experience with Lee Hodge, who has earned a deserved reputation as a goalkeeper in the over 40-year-old team.”
Hodge would like to thank Parkes teammates. “Those who trained and played through some of the hottest conditions so we could play at the National Championships every year and this year at the National Masters Indoor Challenge,” she said.
“But especially for Denise Gersbach and Dave Mike, without their commitment and dedication we would not be among the top teams in the country and I certainly would not have a fantastic opportunity.
“I also want to thank my employer Linda Reilly for her support and encouragement, and give me time to pursue my hockey.”