EDWINA Bone’s milestone match for the Hockeyroos on Sunday night might just prove to be her most memorable yet.
The former Kinross Wolaroi student will represent Australia for the 50th time, at a pulsating Glasgow National Hockey Centre against Commonwealth Games host nation Scotland.
And waiting for her in the packed crowd will be two welcome faces - Bone’s mother Zelma, who’s come all the way from Orange, and her boyfriend Josh.
It’s the second time in six weeks Zelma has made the trip to Europe - she flew over to the Netherlands to watch her daughter at last month’s World Cup.
But it’s a rare treat for Bone to see her mother twice in the space of two months.
‘‘I can’t remember the last time I went back to Orange,’’ Bone said.
‘‘Fifty games plus I’m going to have some of my closest people here so it’ll be amazing, hopefully.’’
Visiting her family was a lot easier to manage when Bone was living in Canberra working at the AIS, but that all changed when she moved to Perth early last year to pursue her hockey dream.
She’d conquered the Canberra club scene with University Of Canberra and had spent two years in Hockey Australia’s development program without progressing.
It was a massive gamble – leaving behind family and friends including twin sister Meredith, and moving to the other side of the country.
Upon arrival she contacted national coach Adam Commens and soon after she forced her way into the Hockeyroos side.
Barking orders in today's 9-0 win over Wales! Big CONGRATS to creepo janeclax on playing her 50th cap… http://t.co/ZnaRwvhmjx— Edwina Bone (@EdwinaClaire) July 25, 2014
‘‘Work gave me leave without pay for nine months to move over and play a club season over in Perth just to give me a little more exposure,’’ Bone said.
‘‘There were a few injuries and I got my opportunity. It was a bit of a whirlwind, I moved, started training and debuted two months later.’’
Now she’s a mainstay in the Hockeyroos backline, yet to concede in two games this tournament.
So solid has Australia been at the back they’ve conceded just three penalty corners across their two games – a 9-0 thrashing of Wales on Friday and the 4-0 opening-day win over Malaysia.
It’s been a dream start for Bone at her first major Games meet.
‘‘I don’t know if I’ll be at another Commonwealth Games so I’m just trying to make the most of it at the moment,’’ Bone said.
‘‘The vibe is great, I kind of expected it to be like this but I’m lucky that I haven’t been distracted by it at all, I guess I’m soaking it all in.
‘‘We had fun the other night, we sat outside our accommodation and as people walked past we tried to guess what sport they were. There are different body shapes and sizes, different athletic builds.
‘‘I’m just enjoying having that vibe, everyone’s here for the same reason but different at the same time.’’