The countdown continues with less than 150 days until the New Zealand athletes will be in the Olympic Village preparing for what will be the biggest sporting event of their lives. Over the last few weeks we have been a pretty busy group of players. Gym, running, hockey and cross fit sessions have been completed in the hope that we can continue our form and head to London as one of the fittest and strongest teams. Over the next month we have a real goal of improving our conditioning with more fitness sessions in a week than ever before. Tough times for all involved however I'm sure we will see a few more records smashed in Yo-Yo, sprint and agility tests at the end of the month.
Looking back we had a five match series against Korea who are ranked 6th in the world. This was a home series so gave us great opportunity to test our squad and work different combinations. We ended up going 2-0 up in the series but falling away in the last three matches against a Korean side who was at full pace to prepare for their Olympic Qualifying Tournament. This series provided opportunities for new members in the squad to gain quality international experience. Kane Russell, another Southern boy, earned his debut in the first game of the series and capped it off with scoring a goal. He followed it up with a second goal in his second match. It was really cool to be able to play with Kane on his debut as we grew up playing together and was something I was stoked to be a part of.
I attended a New Zealand Olympic Committee Workshop which every potential Olympian is required to go to. This was an exciting day with uniform fitting and insights into how the Olympic Village and playing arenas are shaping up. Definitely some pretty inspiring stuff in there when your looking at photos of London and trying on some nice new clothes.
There was also the Prime Ministers Scholarship awards ceremony which was an awesome night which included a fantastic buffet dinner which as students we loved getting stuck into. Also some great stories from Val, Eric and Nathan who presented the awards.
This week is the first week of our heavy conditioning block. On Monday night we had 'death shuttles' which were about as fun as the name sounds, but its all for the greater good and by the end of this block of training we will be rearing to go...if we make it to the end that is.