Year 12 student cheers on teammates after knee surgery

VITAL SUPPORT: Wests player Eden Jackat (sitting) joins supportive coach Steve Rogers in cheering on the A-grade team following her knee reconstruction.
VITAL SUPPORT: Wests player Eden Jackat (sitting) joins supportive coach Steve Rogers in cheering on the A-grade team following her knee reconstruction. David Nielsen

SEEING a chirpy Eden Jackat cheering on her team, it's hard to imagine the ordeal she's experienced.

She continues to clap on her Wests teammates as she sits next to coach Steve Rogers outside the dugout.

It's as if she could be waiting to play an A-grade hockey match.

However, the talented teenager is showing her team spirit after enduring a horrible mishap earlier in the season.

She snapped the anterior cruciate ligament in her right knee while representing Ipswich at the state open titles in Brisbane.

It was the second last day of the long weekend tournament in April.

"I had to be carried off,'' Jackat, 17, said. "I tried to walk but it just gave way.''

Jackat wants to be doctor, so she gained a valuable insight into one of the most severe injuries a sportsperson can suffer.

"It really hurt when it first happened,'' the Year 12 St Peter Claver College student said.

"But then a few minutes after, there was no pain and then it only kind of hurt when I moved it.''

During reconstruction surgery in June, the Queensland indoor player had a piece of her hamstring tendon used to strengthen the damaged knee.

Now she is preparing for intensive off-season rehabilitation in the hope of being fit for next season.

"I've got another five weeks and I can start exercising again,'' Chuwar-based Jackat said.

She appreciates the help of Magpies coach Rogers who is superbly fit through his CrossFit training.

"Steve's been very supportive and he offered a lot of recovery stuff when I can,'' she said.

She's planning gym work and cycling to get her knee moving.

Before her injury, the fullback/centre half had a captaincy role playing for her new club Wests, having switched from Bellbowrie.

It was against bottom team Bellbowrie last Saturday that Jackat was again encouraging her teammates in their 1-0 loss.

Wests were without key players including Amy Korner, Jade Hooper and Jade Emblem.

However, the Magpies had secured a top four spot for the finals behind Swifts, Hancocks and Norths.

"I haven't missed a game,'' Jackat said of her support role.

"I love to be part of the team.

"I want to come back next year and it's good just to see how the team is progressing.''

 

Setback provides some benefits

KEEPING positive during a difficult time can be just as important as the rehabilitation needed to return to sport.

That's the case for Year 12 St Peter Claver College student Eden Jackat. She gained two major benefits from her enforced break from Ipswich hockey. "I'm in term three, my most crucial term,'' she said, using the time to focus on her studies.

Having played hockey during winter and indoor hockey over summer, she'd hardly had a break. "It's been constant for about six years, so it was good to give my body a break as well,'' the state indoor representative said.

However, when Jackat gets the all-clear to play next year, she's keen to return to Wests in the Ipswich competition. "I am very excited to get back,'' she said.

As one of Ipswich's most promising prospects, Jackat enjoyed working with quality Wests players like former international striker Amy Korner. "Amy is very encouraging and she'll actually tell you what you need to do. You need to use that as encouragement,'' Jackat said.



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