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Goalkeeper Nicki having an amazing week

If you think you are having a good week then compare it to that of Scottish hockey goalkeeper Nicki Cochrane…

The 24-year-old who has won her first full Great Britain cap in Argentina and been named in Team Scotland’s squad for the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in April in recent days.

The former Strathallan School pupil has been in the GB set-up for the last year, but finally got on to the pitch for the side at the weekend in Rosario where the two top quality sides continue to battle it out.

Her Scottish team mates Amy Costello and Sarah Robertson are also involved in the five match Test series.

And on Wednesday the trio were named, along with 15 others, to represent Team Scotland at the Commonwealth Games which are coming up soon in Australia.

After qualification for the World League semi-finals in 2017 and a successful recent test series against Wales, Scotland’s women will be looking to build on sixth place at Glasgow 2014.

Twelve players make their Games debut while five return from the Glasgow 2014 side, along with defender Kareena Cuthbert whose last Games appearance was Delhi 2010.

Nicki Cochrane

So, not a bad week for Nicki then and it has been a very interesting career to date.

As a youngster living in Paris – where her father worked – with her family, Cochrane was a football player.

However, one day her geography teacher who also doubled as hockey coach was looking for a goalkeeper to play in the school team and, once Nicki was put between the sticks, she has never looked back.

“It was all a bit strange to start off with and I wasn’t sure about moving away from football, but once I tried hockey for the first time I loved it and was kind of hooked on it,” she explained.

“I was enjoying it in France, but when I moved back to Scotland and went to Strathallan at around the age of 15 my hockey took off because I was working with good coaches and surrounded by good facilities and that allowed me to dedicate a it more time to it and I started to get into district squads and such like.

“I then also began playing in the second team for Grove Menzieshill in Dundee aged around 16 and that was great because it exposed me to senior hockey and showed me the bits I needed to work on if I was to go higher.”

From there she went on to play for the Grove first XI and, after leaving Strathallan where she had had a great time, she started to study at Edinburgh University.

There her hockey continued apace along with Scotland age-grade and full honours and things have just snowballed from there.

However, even she was amazed when she was included in the wider GB squad for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic cycle.

“It’s so brilliant to have been picked for Great Britain, I wasn’t expecting it so it’s a dream come true,” she admitted.

“Over the last year I have been training with the full squad regularly down south and although at first it was weird playing with lots of big names, now they are my team mates and they have been so welcoming to me.

“I am so lucky to have great team mates there, at Beeston [the club in Nottingham where she now plays] and at Scotland level and that is the great thing about hockey you are always doing things for your team mates and wanting to go that extra mile.

“The last few years with Scotland has been great and I think that the squad are all peaking at the right time so we are ready to go out and show people what we can do when we get to Gold Coast.”

The Commonwealth Games run in Gold Coast, Australia from April 4 to 15

 Team Scotland women’s hockey squad for that event:

Amy Brodie

Camilla Brown

Nicki Cochrane

Robyn Collins

Rebecca Condie

Amy Costello

Kareena Cuthbert

Mairi Drummond

Amy Gibson

Alison Howie

Sarah Jamieson

Lucy Lanigan

Nikki Lloyd

Sarah Robertson

Katie Robertson

Nicola Skrastin

Rebecca Ward

Charlotte Watson

Gilson Gray opened as the largest full service law firm in Scottish legal history, with a portfolio of talent poached from the leading firms in Scotland – opening simultaneously in Glasgow (160 West George Street) and Edinburgh (29 Rutland Square) with a radical client-focused strategy that offers a cost effective alternative to the top ten firms in the country.

The firm also recently landed six awards at the ACQ5 legal awards – the third year in a row that Gilson Gray has seen success – including Managing Partner of the Year award for the second time in three years as well as Insolvency Lawyer of the Year.

gilsongray.co.uk

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