Wednesday, May 25, 2022

The state school team competing with ‘freedom and confidence

If state school kids are exposed to more hockey tournaments, they will be less overwhelmed, says Buckingham HC player and PE teacher Lottie Porter

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Rod Gilmour
Rod Gilmour
The Hockey Paper's Editor. First covered international hockey at the 2010 Commonwealth Games - no better than a full house watching India play England - and has reported for the Daily Telegraph and other major newspapers ever since. Co-founded THP in 2016.

“I have seen it first hand where all you have to do is turn up at the schools and already the students are on the back foot,” says Lottie Porter, a PE teacher at Great Marlow School. “They walk into double sports halls and automatically they feel like they shouldn’t be there.”

Great Marlow School (GMS) is a non-selective state secondary, geographically positioned in an 11+ area in Buckinghamshire with nearby grammar schools. After five years of dedication towards reaching a first national finals, and plenty of matches regarded as the underdog team, GMS will compete at the Super 6s under-18 finals this week after becoming South Central Indoor champions in November.

“The girls’ commitment to training has been outstanding because they’ve had such a strong desire to get to a national final,” says Porter, who also plays for Buckingham HC.

“They’re always underdogs because the only teams they seem to play against are private or grammar school teams.

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This week, the Super 6s schools and club indoor finals will be staged across the UK.

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