Masters hockey is now very much part of the world hockey calendar, which was evident by the number of countries represented at the recent Masters Tournament played in the Netherlands at the same time as the FIH World Cup.
In the Scotland over 45s squad for this event were three Borders veterans, Carolyn Allison from Duns, Jackie Wilson from Hawick and Janet Jack from Melrose.
There were eight teams competing in Scotlands section with all games very competitive and played to a very high standard.
The intense heat (between 25-27 degrees at time) affected the pace of the game and the iced baths really helped to reduce stiff legs.
Scotland played well and ended up taking the bronze medal.
However, on the down side, Carolyn returned home with a knee injury but she recover enough to be able to play in the Home Nations Masters Tournament in Swansea.
This proved to be an exciting three days of hockey took place with 16 teams representing England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland in four age groups - over 40, 45, 50 and 55’s. For the first time Scotland was able to send a team for every age group.
Duns player Moira Anderson was selected for the over 55’s team for this competition.
Matches were highly skilful and competitive, closely contested and exciting to watch.
Carolyn’s over 45’s team were missing three key players due to injuries from the Rotterdam tournament. Carolyn herself was carrying a knee injury sustained at Rotterdam but was still able to put in a good performance.
Her team started off well with a win against Wales, a defeat against England and a draw against Ireland on the Sunday. They ended up third by goal difference, with England triumphant in every age group.
Moira’s over 55’s team suffered three defeats with matches mainly lost in the second half when their mature legs began to show signs of fatigue which let the team down.
The last game on Sunday against England proved to be the most frustrating and physical when Moira sustained a shoulder injury but she was able to finish the game.
Despite the defeats her team were still able to come away with a positive feeling and plenty good points to build on for next year.
England will be hosting the Tournament next year so Carolyn and Moira will be working hard in the hope that they can be selected again for their age groups to take part.
England will also host the European Cup 2015.
On the flight home to Edinburgh from Bristol the pilot announced that there were a large number of the Scotland hockey girls on board and he welcomed them aboard with the passengers giving the players and Scotland Manager Jackie Burnett a large cheer!