Jordyn Holzberger has been offered an AIS hockey scholarship.
Jordyn Holzberger has been offered an AIS hockey scholarship. Rob Williams

Holzberger called up by AIS

JORDYN Holzberger is packing her bags for Perth.

The Yamanto hockey star has been admitted to the Australian Institute of Sport, based in Perth, and selected in Australian Junior and A teams to play France in the WA capital in the last week of February and first week of March.

“It came as a surprise,” she said of her selection. “You're always hoping but when it actually happens, it's a shock.”

Holzberger's selection came following a national training camp in Perth last week when she obviously impressed the new national selection committee.

She will remain in Perth with the AIS for two-and-a-half months, meaning she is likely to defer her plans to begin a Bachelor of Business degree.

“I didn't think I was a very big chance (of getting selected),” Holzberger said. “I was fairly happy with the way I played but there's always room for improvement.”

The Hancocks striker/ midfielder will be the youngest of the 30 woman squad who will train with the AIS until the Australian Hockey League (AHL) begins in May.

“I'm excited, but a little bit scared,” she said.

“Moving to another state without my parents, but I think I'll be right.

“There are a few Queensland girls in the squad and I'm going to move into a place with one of them.”

It will put Holzberger's domestic skills to the test.

Fortunately, the AIS provides breakfasts and Holzberger has dinners covered with her chicken satay recipe.

It is the training that will provide the biggest test.

Holzberger represented the Queensland Scorchers in last year's AHL and this year's tournament presents an opportunity to further her national claims.

“I think if I'm training well over there and show them I'm really dedicated, it will come down to how I perform at the AHL,” she said.

“I was a little bit nervous going into it (last year).

“It came as a bit of a shock. It was really fast-paced but I settled into it. This year I'm more confident in myself.”

But she is not taking her spot in the Queensland team for granted.

“It just depends on how I perform at the trials,” she said.

Her motivation couldn't be higher with a long-term goal of being part of the Australian Olympic squad to contest the London Games next year.

“I've got a little bit of work to do,” Holzberger said.

“On my fitness and strength and my game play and decision making.

“But that will come with experience.”

Training and playing alongside the likes of tournament-hardened Hockeyroos captain Madonna Blythe, at the AIS and in the Queensland AHL team, will give her the best chance at gaining all the experience she needs.



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