Bundy's Masters leads the way
HOCKEY: It doesn't matter how many times you have been picked for your state to play, the feeling is still as good as the first time.
That's the feeling for Bundaberg's Angela Asnicar as she prepares to play for her state for the fifth time in Masters.
Asnicar is one of five players from the Rum City selected for the Queensland Masters teams to compete at the nationals in September on the Gold Coast after the recent state titles.
The Waves Cities player has been picked in the over 45 with Susan Kendall (over 40), Chris Polhmann (over 50), Maree Beaumont (over 55), and Deborah Burchard (over 60) picked.
"I'm really excited, I love wearing the Maroon and it is great to be selected again,” Asnicar said.
"I think it is special any time you get selected to be honest.
"And for me it was an added bonus to be selected as a co-captain.”
She said it was a proud moment to lead the team.
"We'll train for a few days before the tournament,” she said.
"I can't wait to play.”
Kendall said it showed how strong Bundaberg was at Masters to have five players selected in five different age groups.
The selection for all is even better because the nationals will be held in Queensland.
"I've had plenty (of selections) for Queensland but not for masters. It is only my third,” Kendall said.
"It is my first time (at home), which adds to the excitement and privilege.
"We'll get to play in front of family and friends.”
The grounds will also be familiar to Kendall, she has played on them recently in competition.
The Gold Coast venue the nationals will be held at are the same as the ones used for the Commonwealth Games last year.
"They are exactly the same pitch,” she said.
"That's where I played for my Mudgee club (Mudgeeraba Hockey Club).
"It's a lovely facility to play at, so I'll be looking forward to that.”
The five players got picked after all of them guided Bundaberg to a second-placed finish at the state titles for the Masters in Division 2 in Mackay. Bundaberg finished second in its Pool group before beating Brisbane 2 in the semis in a shootout.
The side lost to Rockhampton 2-1 to fall just short of promotion to the top tier of the competition for next year.
Bundaberg also fielded another six in Division 6 that finished fifth.
"We struggled for numbers this year,” Asnicar revealed.
"To make it to the final in Division 2 and only lose to Rockhampton, we did well, really well.”
Kendall said most of the credit needed to go to the older players that were able to out play younger rivals in the tournament.
"Our team exceeded expectations,” she said.
"We were expecting to be in the relegation game.
"Considering we had ladies in the older age bracket, they are all competing at the state titles against girls that are 35 and 40.
"They've done really well to compete against ladies that are younger than them.”
The nationals for all groups are from September 26.