Orange product Chloe Barrett’s had no shortage of success in her time donning the sky blue of NSW which, despite the fact she’s still only 20 years old, seems to have stretched on forever.
So much so her name may as well be synonymous with that term, success, certainly based on her constant triumphs in the indoor arena at the very least.
She added another triumph to her already remarkable tally this week, leading NSW to another win at the Hockey Australia Under-21 Indoor National Championship at Goulburn.
She’s now played an integral role in three gold-medal wins at that level in the last four years and in the one year she didn’t, in 2017, she vice-captained her state’s under-18 side to the national title.
That’s an astonishing enough record in itself, but when you add her under-15 gold medal win from a number of years ago it becomes simply extraordinary.
“I’m pretty sure I’ve won gold at every national championship I’ve played in with NSW, that’s pretty exciting,” Barrett said, thanks to her unassuming nature she only realised that when speaking with the Central Western Daily too.
This national title win, secured thanks to a 1-nil grand final victory over the ACT on Tuesday, was made a touch more special for Barrett because it came alongside Dubbo’s Emma Corcoran, one of her closest friends.
They’ve won gold medals together for NSW before, but Barrett explained this one was a little bit different.
“This year we played in the same rotation,” she said.
“We’ve played with a team-on-team-off plan and [in previous years] Em and I have been on different rotations, so we got to play a lot of the tournament together this time which was really great.
“We live together, we travel to play together in Sydney, we just do basically everything together really. Winning these tournaments is always exciting, but being able to do it with your best mate does make it extra special.”
NSW ran through the tournament undefeated and weren’t really challenged outside the decider and their 2-1, pool stage win over Western Australia, which proved a touch surprising, Barrett admitted.
“We lost a handful of players from last year actually, they aged out, so we certainly weren’t expecting to win it. But we were certainly well-prepared and our coach (Liam Dixon) kept telling us there’s no substitute for preparation,” she said.
“I think we showed that in our early games, we won most of them by plenty and that gave us confidence (although) our performance in the final was probably, and I hope this doesn’t sound bad, our worst of the tournament.
“We got the result and that’s the main thing but we were a bit lucky to score in the first 30 seconds or so and then hold them out.”
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Individually Barrett was stoked with her performance and that of Corcoran too, the Orange star notched one goal while the Dubbo ace laced in three.
“I think it was my best performance at one of these tournaments, I was really happy with it,” Barrett said.
“I’d prepared really well for this because I’d felt like I hadn’t had much in terms of goals before that, so this gave me a chance to work towards something and I’m glad that paid off.”
The duo still have one year left to win another gold medal in the under-21 age group, should they get picked again, but for now the focus shifts to the field hockey season.
They’ll start their pre-season with University of NSW, a side also coached by Dixon, in February.
After earning promotion the year prior, 2018 was UNSW’s first season in the Sydney Women’s Hockey League Metro 1 competition.
“Last year… we didn't really get the results we wanted, but we weren’t far off, a lot of one and two-goal losses,” Barrett said.
“But it was our first year in that division and we’re starting our preparations in February, we’re definitely looking to really come out firing.”
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