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Hockey in Dunedin

• Posted in Hockey / New Zealand • By Ian

“Ok girls, let’s keep things simple and go and win this!” These are the words I hear every time the team leaves the changing rooms and goes for our pre game warm up.

For the past three months I have been living and playing hockey in Dunedin, New Zealand. Situated on the south west coast of the South Island, Dunedin is home to the Blue penguins, New Zealand’s only castle, the famous Highlanders and Taieri Hockey Club. From the beginning this club has welcomed me and given me some memorable hockey moments during my time playing with them.

The season opened with a bang playing in a mini tournament with the many local hockey teams based in and around Dunedin. The Taieri Terrors, the team which I play with, having never played together before managed to win the tournament after an extremely close and nail biting penalty shootout.  From this weekend, the team has grown and managed to score some incredible goals. I feel I have also improved greatly through the training we have each week and despite feeling broken after each fitness session they have always been a great place for a friendly catch up and moment to let out a bit of madness to help everyone get through the session.

As part of my time here I have also had the chance to be a part of Taieri Hockey Club's latest addition of the C team or the Taieri Cougars. Made up of new players and those who haven’t played for many years the team has come along in leaps and bounds having its first draw in my penultimate weekend playing with them. Playing with them has improved my confidence and allowed me to try out new positions and skills on the hockey field as well as meet some great people.  

With so much sport happening in Dunedin it is hard to escape the fitness bug. With easily accessible cycle ways leading to the Otago bike trails, many hills to climb in and around the city and being the home of the Highlanders there is always something to explore and do when I’m not in the gym or on the Astro turf both of which have slowly become a second home. The past three months have been truly memorable and I look forward to being able to use the skills I have learnt when I go back to the UK and continue to play hockey.   

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