Helen to help Aussies again
HELEN Rankin Jarvie has been selected for Australia in hockey at Veterans level for the last three years but even she does not know what to expect when her over-40s team will take on the UK in a tournament starting on July 17 on the Gold Coast.
New Zealand will also take part in the competition but Ballina player Rankin Jarvie has never played against the UK before.
“I’ve played against New Zealand before but the UK is a bit of an unknown quantity,” she said.
“We haven’t played them or beaten them for a while.”
Rankin Jarvie’s battles against the New Zealanders have been tight affairs.
The 43-year-old half-line player lost a series 2-1 to our southern neighbours in 2008.
But Rankin Jarvie converted a high pressure goal during Australia’s only win in that series courtesy of a penalty shoot-out after scores were locked at full-time.
Rankin Jarvie’s side then took revenge over New Zealand last year, winning a gold medal for their series win.
Rankin Jarvie has worked tirelessly to keep her spot in the Australian team.
She follows national coach Kathy Costello’s rigorous schedule six days a week as well as doing her own fitness work.
Because of this, Rankin Jarvie has actually become a better hockey player with age.
“It’s full-on but I’ve found all the fitness work has improved my hockey,” she said.
Rankin Jarvie will represent her country alongside Easts player Janelle Pittman.
Pittman will play for Australia for the first time after originally picked as a shadow player.
An injury in the squad then opened the door for the 40-year-old.
“Janelle’s a skilful striker,” Rankin Jarvie said.
“We know each other’s game so well and that helps when you go into a representative camp.”