England Hockey rookie Emily Defroand signs for Mercian Hockey, joining her England team mates Lily Owsley and Amy Tenant in representing the brand.
Emily (22) starting playing hockey at the age of 7, following in her mother’s footsteps in playing for Havering Hockey Club in Essex, UK, before joining the invincibles of Surbiton HC for the 2016/17 season via Old Loughtonians and University of Birmingham. Emily has been a member of the England set up for a number of years, representing her country at junior level since the age of 15.
“It is fantastic to have another international athlete on board with the brand. The last 12 months have seen some major changes in the business and we have enjoyed the input from our sponsored player group in that process. We want to work with our players, not just providing them with great kit but promoting them as our hero’s. Emily will be a fantastic role model in the hockey world and we look forward to working with her and seeing her on the world stage” Mercian Hockey Managing Director Simon Mason.
Taking time out of her busy schedule, we got to know Emily that little bit better:
Do you have any nicknames?
Yes, Em D or Froandy
Why did you want to be a midfielder?
It was the running, from playing at a young age, I was always the one that liked to run up and down the pitch. I used to play in the same side as my mum. We both played centre midfield, I did the running and she took the glory, I’d win the ball back pass to mum and she would take the praise for creating the goals.
What is your motto in life?
Talent only gets you half way, hard work does the rest. Or one that I try to do every day is “Beat Yesterday”.
What does a typical week look like for you?
Well it’s pretty much Hockey Hockey Hockey. On a central contract week we have 5 pitch and 3 gym sessions with England and then additional training and matches with Surbiton HC.
The pitch sessions range from small sided match scenario games to full 11-a-side competitive matches against the rest of the squad. Not forgetting the famous thinking Thursday sessions.
What gets you up in the morning?
Apart from the pride of doing what I love and living my dreams at the same time, I always like to push myself. Going back to my Motto – Beat Yesterday, if I can do that as a player, Athlete and a person then I will be very happy.
Who do you look up to in Hockey and the wider sporting world?
Both of those are easy, Kate Richardson-Walsh and Jess Ennis-Hill. Both are exemplary role models for all women, not just sports women. They empower the people around them and lead with such class and elegance. Truly inspirational, both Kate and Jess play pivotal roles in their sport and will do for years to come.
What is your greatest achievement to date?
It’s so hard to pick one, I have been lucky to have some great memories after just a few years and at a young age. It would be a toss-up between finishing 4th at the Junior World Cup in 2014 or being named the England Hockey Junior Performance Player of the Year 2015.
And finally some quick fire questions,
Chinese or Indian – Chinese
Dogs or Cats – Dogs
Nights in or Nights out – Nights In
Olympics or World Cup – Olympics
Early Bird or Night Owl – Early Bird
Summer or Winter – Summer
Starter or Dessert – Dessert
Text or Call – Text
England or Great Britain – Great Britain
Hard work or High Skill – Hard Work
Shootout or Strokes – Shootout
Game winning Goal or Game saving tackle – Game winning goal