Club's artificial intelligence
THIS year saw the completion of the long overdue artificial surface installed at Rigby Park.
With the installation of the artificial surface, two Gladstone sides won their respective age state titles and Gladstone Hockey can boast about having 17 of their members selected to represent Queensland.
This is something any sporting organisation would be proud of.
The age group range for the state representatives is from under-13s through to the spritely over-70 Masters.
The pleasing aspect is the number of junior players selected to represent Queensland.
Our state representatives will be competing at national titles from Perth to Hobart to Canberra and also in New Zealand.
To assist our state representatives the Queensland Academy of Sport (QAS) assistant coach Carl Dalton will be holding two training clinics in Gladstone on Tuesday, August 7 from 4.30-6pm and on Wednesday, August 8 from 6-7.30am.
On Tuesday night, Dalton will be holding a session at the clubhouse for coaching our coaches.
The world-class artificial surface in Gladstone allows our members to train and play on the latest surface available. Our juniors can now compete on a level footing with those from other centres.
This removes the main excuse given to our players, by state selectors, for their non-selection into state squads - "you don't have a turf so your juniors don't have turf skills".
The artificial surface can be played on either wet or dry, thus making it available for all conditions, and is cost effective for the association to operate and maintain.
With the installation of the $1.6 million surface the Gladstone Hockey Association can now host more state titles like the successful over 40s and over 50s state titles held earlier this year.
With the success of our players gaining state selection, perhaps in the near future Gladstone will be watching one of their own represent Australia in hockey at the Olympics Games.