(Article By VUNIWAQA BOLA writing in the Fiji Sun Online 28 Dec 2012)
Fiji Hockey head coach Hector Smith will take locals to be up against the world’s best in the second round of the World Hockey League in India next year.
The second round to be played in February will see Fiji playing games against India, China, Ireland , Bangladesh and Azerbaijan.
“We will be going there with our local talents, local coach and local brand of hockey,”Smith said.
“We know what we are up against, we expect the best to come but we’ll do the best of our ability.
“We’ve been training hard, just had four days break and we’re back at the turf.
“We want to compete and not just make up the numbers.”
He has never had the opportunity to play in any tournament as such when he was a player and he would grab the opportunity now to take his best team and showcase Fiji’s best.
“This is an opportunity of a lifetime and its quality will help us gauge ourselves.”
And the lucky thing for the men’s hockey team is that their coach has returned from the games venue and knows what it will be like when they play on an international turf where hockey is a national sport.
“It’s going to be massive, there’s nothing like it and we’ll just need to work on our mental toughness because we want to get the job done and we don’t want to let our supporters at home down.”