‘Spoon’ on track for Olympics
MURWILLUMBAH hockey player Dylan Wotherspoon is a step closer to becoming an Olympian after being named in Australia's 27-man squad for the 2016 Games in Rio.
Wotherspoon, 22, made his Kookaburras debut in December last year during the Champions Trophy tournament in India.
Kookaburras coach Graham Reid said Wotherspoon had risen to potential Olympian on the back of strong, physical performances.
"'Spoon' looked like missing out but we gave him an opportunity with three games in India and he's performed fantastically, especially against the Europeans, who are very physical," Reid said.
"We play a lot against the Asian nations, who are a lot lighter, but the Europeans are really physical and that's what I loved about Dylan and his ability to stand up and be a target."
Reid said Wotherspoon's continual growth was pleasing, following a quieter period of development.
"He's followed the standard path of a normal rookie, with a really good debut and rushing on to the scene, then plateauing," Reid said.
"But he's now back on the trajectory we need him to be on and he's earned his place."
Half the selected squad are vying for their first Olympics after a period of rebuilding for the Australian team.