ORANGE hockey gun Madie Smith capped off a hectic year by adding more international experience to her resume.
Smith attended the Hockey Australia National Futures Camp in Canberra this month and was given the chance to play against the Japanese under 18 team.
The camp was attended by 31 hand-picked players aged between 16 and 18 years.
The girls had been selected from this year’s Australian under 18 championships.
Smith is no stranger to representative teams but said the camp, which was run by national junior coach Craig Victory, was unlike anything she’d experienced before.
“At the start it was a real shock to the system because I’m not used to that intensity of training,” Smith said.
The group trained for two days before a side was selected to play four games against the Japanese under 18 team.
“Initially I didn’t make the side,” Smith explained.
“So the team would train and we’d train separately. I must have trained well so they put me in for the second last game.”
The 17-year-old said taking on the Japanese was tough.
“They were so fast. Trying to keep up with them was crazy,” she said.
“I thought I played ok.”
The fullback said one Japanese player in particular attracted plenty of attention from the Australian girls.
“There was one girl in the other team we nicknamed ‘Danger Girl’,” Smith laughed.
“Every time she got the ball she seemed to score or she burned you.”
The Australian girls lost that game 2-1, but won their final match to come out on top in the series.
Smith had a short break from training over Christmas and has jumped straight back into it.
Her representative hockey commitments have kept her busy this year.
She started by touring New Zealand and Argentina with the Australian Schoolgirls 16s team in February.
She was selected in the Western and then NSW Combined High Schools (CHS) open girls’ sides.
She was part of the NSW side that took out the Australian under 18 women’s championship and she’s already in the state squad for 2014.
Smith will trial for the NSW 18s in January.