Hockey World Cup 2018: Defroand excited for Argentina trip
PUBLISHED: 07:00 09 February 2018
The women's World Cup is in London this summer and Emily Defroand flew out to Argentina with Great Britain this week for a five-Test series as part of the build-up.
In a new column, Emily looks forward to the trip and discusses life behind the scenes at Bisham Abbey.
“As the first Great Britain trip of this Olympic cycle is it an absolute honour to have been selected in the squad of 20 to travel to Argentina. The trip will definitely be a special one with a number of us hoping to gain our first senior Great Britain caps, as well as our captain Alex Danson in line to win her 100th GB cap.
“Having spoken to a few longer-standing squad members prior to selection, they said Argentina is one of their favourite places in the world to play so I’m extremely excited to experience this for the first time.
“I’m looking forward to the prospect of five games against the world number three side. Argentina are one of the most skilful teams in the world and having played a few times already this cycle, I predict the matches to be very fast paced and closely fought. We will embrace the challenge of playing in front of a noisy crowd and hope to continue making good progress.
“Our first three-week block of 2018 has most definitely been the toughest yet! We were welcomed back to Bisham after Christmas to fitness testing and it has been very full-on, with higher volume gym sessions, higher intensity sessions on the pitch and meetings with our psychologist and nutritionist.
“There has been a great buzz around the camp and real intent in everything we do. The whole squad is very much together and looking forward to the year ahead.
“I’m still loving every minute! My aim over the coming months is to continue working hard off the pitch to get physically stronger and more robust in the gym. I’ve never been one of the strongest so increasing my muscle mass does not come too naturally.
“Working hard in the gym is a form of injury prevention and will hopefully benefit my performances on the pitch too. I’ll also be busy over the next few months in my East London Hockey Ambassador role in the build-up to this summer’s home World Cup. I will be visiting local schools and clubs to inspire people to participate in hockey and raise the awareness of the World Cup which I am really proud to be a part of.”