Hockey: Team GB women hope to create legacy for future generations


Team GB's hockey captain Kate Walsh hopes that the team's success at the Games could secure a legacy for the sport and inspire their successors.

Team GB’s dream of winning the London 2012 title ended with defeat to Argentina in last night’s semi-final, but victory over New Zealand tomorrow would mean Walsh and her team-mates finishing the Games with a bronze medal.

Nearly all of Britain’s players were in tears after the 2-1 loss. But despite the disappointment, Walsh is optimistic about the future. “It would be a fantastic achievement to win bronze,” she said. “The legacy we want from these Games is to get girls back out playing hockey.

“We want to get them out there going to clubs, playing rush hockey, playing indoor hockey. We want hockey out there and we want more people playing.

“It’s a massive hockey family and it’s so welcoming and warm and it’s so inclusive. We need more people watching, playing and enjoying hockey and if we could get a bronze, it would help that, absolutely. Success breeds success, and that’s what we want.”

Before the next generation of Great Britain hockey players start to work towards the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro, the current crop are determined to end their campaign at the Riverbank Arena on a high note.

Defending champions Holland face Argentina in the final after overcoming New Zealand in a shoot-out following a 2-2 draw. That leaves the Kiwis and Great Britain to battle for the final medal, and the home team are in no mood to let it slip from their grasp.

“We are not going home empty-handed,” vowed Walsh. “We’ve fought too hard and been through too much. There are girls who aren’t here and we owe them. There are also our friends and families who have been there throughout this tournament.

“Will it be hard to lift ourselves for the bronze-medal match? Not a chance. We have been in this position many times before as England, Scotland and Wales, and now as Great Britain, and we will fight for that bronze medal.

“The British crowd have been outstanding. We couldn’t have asked for any more from them, and we want it again tomorrow. We played really well against Argentina and to lose in the way we did was heartbreaking. Now we will give every ounce of everything we have to make sure we end the competition in third place.”

The impressive Argentines were 2-0 ahead at half-time, although the British team complained bitterly about the second from Carla Rebecchi as they believed Argentina had committed an infringement in the build-up.

Alex Danson scored for Great Britain late in the game, but they could not break down a well-organised Argentina defence and had to accept defeat.

Nicola White added: “We were very unlucky that we couldn’t get a second goal because we had the belief that we could do it. We came here aiming for gold and that is why everyone was so upset at the end of the match.

“Now the main thing to focus on is the bronze-medal game. We’ll prepare for it and we will fight and fight. We won’t come off that pitch until we’ve got a medal.”

New Zealand were equally devastated after their painful shoot-out defeat against defending champions Holland. It was the first time in Olympic history that teams could not be separated after extra-time.

Dutch goalkeeper Joyce Sombroek saved three of New Zealand’s first four efforts while Naomi van As, Eva de Goede and Ellen Hoog all scored to ensure Holland would defend their title in tomorrow night’s final.

“It was an advantage as we’ve already played a shoot-out in big tournaments, in finals,” said Dutch player Kim Lammers. “You can’t train these nerves with this audience and pressure. That was an advantage for us today and finally we won.”

general electionThis quiz matches undecided voters with the best party for them
Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Matthew Macfadyen starred in the big screen adaptation of Austen's novel in 2005
tvStar says studios are forcing actors to get buff for period roles
Prince William and his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge show their newly-born daughter, their second child, to the media outside the Lindo Wing at St Mary's Hospital in central London, on 2 May 2015.
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before