State hockey selection gives a sense of deja vu for Reith-Snare and Ferguson

STATE REGULARS: Eva Reith-Snare and Bailey Ferguson were named in their respective NSW under-15 hockey sides for next month’s nationals. Photo: MATT FINDLAY 0309mfhockHOCKEYWEDNESDAY afternoon may as well have been Groundhog Day for Orange’s Eva Reith-Snare and Bailey Ferguson.
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Speaking after being named in their respective boys’ and girls’ NSW under-15 sides for the 2016 Hockey Australia National Championships, the pair were reservedly modest and casually confident, respectively.

Eerily, the situation was all but identical to that of Wednesday, August 6, 2014 – just after they were named in their respective under-13 sides.

Reith-Snare said she was excited to be named in the side, but admitted to some nerves about NSW’s prospects, just like in 2014, while Ferguson was supremely confident of his side’s chances and labelled Queensland and Victoria as NSW’s biggest obstacles, just like in 2014.

Two years ago, both went on to win gold medals.

They’re hoping it happens again.

“Yeah, hopefully we come away with the gold,” Ferguson, an ever-aloof character, said.

“Fingers crossed (we both do),” Reith-Snare added.

Reith-Snare was part of the NSW girls’ under-15 side last year while Ferguson has been promoted after playing in the boys’ under-15 Blues – development – team in 2015.

Neither said they were expecting to be named again, which came after initial selection in their respective squads followed by fitness testing and training days, and the Basil Sellers Country vs City Regional Challenge two weekends ago.

There’s little wonder why Ferguson is confident, his NSW side contains all but three members of the under-13 side that claimed gold two years ago, while Reith-Snare’s is substantially different.

“We struggled a little bit last year working as a team and coming together because we hadn’t played together,” Reith-Snare said.

“Hopefully this year we’ll be a bit better there. It seems like a pretty fun group though.

“We have a few training [sessions] together though.”

In a bid to avoid the little hockey leading in – apart from a handful of women’s Premier League Hockey games in Reith-Snare’s case – being a problem, the pair have been training reasonably intensively with the likes of former Welsh under-21 representative Todd Freedman.

The 2016 Hockey Australia National Championships are in April, at Wollongong.

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