Australia Country to take on NZ
SOUTHSIDE United star Andrea Farrow does her talking on the field.
The quietly spoken, but talented midfielder has been the shining light this season, with Southside United undefeated in the Rockhampton Hockey Association’s A1 women’s competition after three rounds of competition.
After a splendid 2010, Farrow now turns her focus on representing Australia Country on their annual tour of New Zealand.
Farrow, Frenchville goal keeper Melissa Crossman and Wanderers strike weapon Todd Harmsworth travel to New Zealand on the weekend for their first senior men and women’s Australia Country teams.
One of the senior players in the Southside team, Farrow’s game has continually evolved to where she is ranked among the best country players in Australia, something she puts down to coaching and experience gained at a higher level.
“The last couple of years we’ve had a change up in the coaching at our club which has had a positive impact at club level,” Farrow said.
“We’ve probably been a bit more serious with it. What we’re doing is taking what we’re learning at representative level ... bringing it back here and then using it to bring the players here up to that level.”
Harmsworth captained the Australian Country under 21 men’s side late last year on their tour of Fiji, but is making his debut for the senior men’s side on their nine-match tour.
Australia opens their tour with two matches against Wellington under 21s on Sunday and Monday night, before meeting fellow club side Midland under 21s later in the week.
The tour culminates a three-match Test series against an emerging national team, New Zealand Barbarians; which Harmsworth is expecting a tough contest on their home soil.
After facing a number of the Barbarians players while representing Australia Country under 21 men’s last year, Todd is expecting a physical hit out.
“The Barbarians will be the toughest side we’ll play against. They’ll be stronger than they were last year,” Harmsworth said.
“New Zealand hockey in general is getting stronger and stronger, but we’ll go alright.”
The Barbarians will be the toughest side we’ll play against.