Lee opts for youth and experience in World League squad
June 13, 2013 09:29 am
Eight members of last year's Olympic bronze medal winning team will make up Jason Lee's England squad for the women's Investec Hockey World League semi-final.
Lee, who guided the men's team to fourth at London 2012, admitted selection was tough, with a number of new faces replacing key names who retired following the Olympics, including goalkeeper Beth Storry and veteran Crista Cullen.
Captain Kate Walsh and Alex Danson are the two most experienced members of the line-up with nearly 500 England and British caps between them and they'll be joined by Olympic team-mates Nicola White, Hannah Macleod, Ashleigh Ball, Laura Unsworth, Sally Walton and Georgie Twigg.
Also selected are five athletes who were part of the training squad in the build up to London 2012. Susie Gilbert, Sam Quek and Susannah Townsend will play alongside Maddie Hinch and Kirsty Mackay who are the two goalkeepers for the tournament.
“It feels like there’s a great balance in the squad; about half is made up of Olympians and that experience sits really well alongside the athletes who joined us on the centralised programme in April," said Walsh.
"Quite a few of the girls have only had a small taste of senior international tournaments, but with the national age group squads and the single system in place everyone has had the opportunity to play at an international level.
"The group has performed well over the last few months and we are looking forward to giving our all in front of a home crowd as we pursue World Cup qualification.”
England face group games against Australia, Spain and South Africa in the eight team tournament, which starts on June 22nd.
© Sportsbeat 2013