By Lawrence Machado
Cathy Brennan has been playing hockey for more than 50 years and at 73 years, is now the oldest player at Baulkham Hills Women’s Hockey Club and indeed one of the oldest in the whole North West Sydney competition. Not that you will notice it as she is one of the busiest players on the field.
“I always feel that I am able to do whatever I want to do – I don’t let age hold me back as it is only a number,” said the versatile hockey stalwart. Her commitment and standout play saw her being picked for the Masters competition for North West Sydney.
The fun-loving Cathy has been playing high-standard hockey since she was in her teens back in Malaysia, where she turned out for Malacca state at the school level. Cathy migrated to Sydney in 1979 where she met and married Brian.
“I had a break of over 20 years and I started playing again because my daughter was playing in the adult competition and they needed a goalkeeper,” the Prospect local said. “My daughter doesn’t play anymore, but I still do.
My normal position is either centre forward, inner or wing. Locally, I have found unfortunately that hockey appears to be losing participants, as I’ve seen the local competition decrease in size over the years I’ve been playing. When we started there were four big divisions, and now we have only two.
“I think hockey is overshadowed by the bigger sports like cricket, netball, and football. Hockey is really only on TV when the Olympics and/or Commonwealth Games are on – and it’s always great when there is a chance to see it on TV because it is a fast-paced sport with lots of exciting skills.”
Cathy says she keeps active in the house and garden and would like other seniors to have a go at hockey.
“Life is too short to sit on the sidelines; take a chance as I think you will enjoy yourself and make some good friends,” Cathy said. “We might not win the competition, but we do have a lot of fun playing each week.”
Asked about her proudest achievements in hockey, Cathy simply said: “It is enjoying playing the game that I love, and meeting many new people and making good friends.
“Because hockey is a team sport, I love coming back every year and playing with my friends. “I also enjoy the exercise and physical movement that I get while playing the game.”
The hockey season is usually from April to September and Baulkham Hills Women’s Hockey Club always welcomes new players, experienced or not.
The club celebrated its 50th birthday in 2019 and is very much a family oriented club with players of all ages from 12 years and up. If you are interested in playing hockey, the club can be contacted by email – [email protected] – or via their website – http://www.bhwhc.org.au or on their Facebook page.