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Tuesday, 21 May 2019 04:37 am

Youth Olympian didn’t stop at white lines

Sep 23rd, 2014 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, News, Sport, Top Picture

YOUTH OLYMPIAN: Bridget Kiddle. IMAGE: Ashleigh Manning.

YOUTH OLYMPIAN: Bridget Kiddle. IMAGE: Ashleigh Manning.

A DISLIKE of stopping at the lines in netball led Bridget Kiddle to China this year, where she represented New Zealand in hockey.

Kiddle competed at the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing.

“I didn’t like stopping at the lines in netball and both my mother and my granddad have played hockey so it was a good match for me,” she says.

Kiddle comes from a sporting family, with her older sister representing New Zealand in rowing, and both her mother and grandfather representing Wellington in hockey.

“Jackie went to Italy to compete in the Junior World Rowing Championships earlier this year and placed fourth, she also plays hockey so she’s a very good role model.”

Her older sister Jackie is her biggest inspiration, she says.

However, Kiddle obviously self-motivated, because she is head girl and captain of the first XI hockey team at Samuel Marsden.

The 18 year old began playing hockey at the age of six and has devoted plenty of time getting to china.

To get to the Youth Olympic Games, they had to qualify at the Oceania Youth Olympic Games Qualifier in Vanuatu, which they won.

A lot of training and mentoring by former top field hockey players followed.

“Before China, I had to train for between a minimum of 10 hours and a maximum of 15 hours a week.”

Kiddle found the climate in China humid and hot.

“It was quite almost smoggy because of all the pollution. We had to acclimatise very quickly.”

Kiddle said she didn’t realise just how important it was to be there, until she started playing.

“It was really special. The village itself was overwhelming because of the sheer amount of people.”

The New Zealand team placed fifth out of 10 teams overall.

Kiddle says another of her biggest sporting achievements was being selected for the national Junior Black Sticks Under-18 wider hockey squad last year, which ultimately lead to her being selected for the Youth Olympic team this year.

Kiddle has also represented Wellington at the North Island Secondary School Athletics Championships this year and placed second in the 2000m steeple chase event.

One of her future sporting goals is to compete at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.

“I hope to get to Olympics by staying in the sport and just continuing to build on my skills.”

At this stage, Kiddle is thinking she will either attend Victoria University in Wellington or University of Canterbury in Christchurch next year, to complete a science degree in biology.

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