Cullen demands focus from Team GB
July 6, 2012 15:50 pm
Great Britain's female hockey team may have their sights set on a medal at London 2012 but defender Crista Cullen insists they cannot afford to get ahead of themselves.
With their opening three matches against Japan, Korea and Belgium - all ranked below them - Danny Kerry's side have an ideal chance to get their campaign off to a good start before they meet Beijing silver medallists China and then world number ones and defending champions Holland in their final pool fixture.
"We have consistently medalled in the last three years, which is what we aspired to do, rising to fourth in the world but it is one game at a time," Cullen told Press Association Sport.
"Our focus is with a medal mentality but the top 12 teams in the world consistently take points off each other.
"The ambition we have as a group is to get ourselves on the podium and ideally in top spot come London.
"But we have to start learning to turn the screw, particularly in the semi-finals, to make sure we don't miss out."
Cullen has a formidable partnership with captain Kate Walsh in defence and is also a key player at set-pieces.
Success in her role as the main penalty corner striker will be a vital part of their Olympic campaign and the 26-year-old is relishing the challenge in front of her.
"I am one of those very lucky people who is able to put the ball at goal so it is up to my team to win the penalty corners," she added.
"I've worked hard on how to handle the pressure of being penalty corner specialist and I am very happy with how my ratios are going. It is about keeping consistent and keeping delivering to make sure that helps the team come the Games."
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