Growing up in Bega there are two ways you can spend your weekend — drink box wine in the park or join a sports team. I come from a very sporty family. Sport was inevitable.
From age six, I tried a number of sports. I tried judo but I couldn’t land properly. I kept falling asleep playing mini soccer and I was useless at basketball. Then at age 10 I took up hockey, which seemed to stick.
I played in the Far South Coast Hockey Association and represented Bega High School for the inter-school comp and at tournaments.
From 1996 to 1999 I played for the Bega Bobcats. We were a team of schoolmates who were led by my dad. Three years in a row we took home the A Grade men’s premiership.
We were the most hated team in the comp and we loved it.
In 2000 I finished school, so I broke out (and came out) from Bega and moved to Melbourne where sport was replaced by clubs and pubs until 2003 when I moved to Sydney. I played hockey for Eastern Suburbs but I couldn’t finish the season due to an injury. I turned to the gym where I took up weight training for five years.
In March 2009 I saw an ad in SSO for aspiring hockey players to participate in a ‘have a go at hockey day’ for the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Hockey club aka Bentstix. I tried to talk my partner Matt into joining me, but he opted for the spectator role as long as there was beer at the kiosk. I signed up that day for the 2009 men’s winter competition.
2009 was Bentstix best season since the club began, with the team narrowly missing a shot at the grand final due to a draw in the semis. Although we finished third on the ladder, we considered it a victory and have our eyes set on taking the premiership in 2010.
As well as playing hockey, Bentstix have offered opportunities that I never would have had.
In October, a few team members and I were in the midnight show at Sleaze Ball.
I get motivated by listening to hardcore metal music like Remembering Never and Misery Signals.
I don’t believe in any ‘before-game traditions’ and I gave up my ‘old trusty’ stick for something lighter and newer. Old trusty went to my mate Luke, who has just started playing.
For anyone interested in hockey, it doesn’t matter if you don’t know how to hold a hockey stick or don’t know the difference between a long and a short corner. The rules are easy and it doesn’t take long to pick up the basics. It is awesome exercise with at least one game a week and training one night a week.
If you’re more of a spectator, grab some pom-poms and come along to cheer us on. We play most Saturdays through winter.