Local hockey star Renae Parsons excited to help coach WA Country women’s side at home national championships

Headshot of Cameron Newbold
Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
Renae Parsons is looking forward to her role as assistant coach of the WA women’s team for the upcoming Hockey Australia Country Challenge on home turf.
Camera IconRenae Parsons is looking forward to her role as assistant coach of the WA women’s team for the upcoming Hockey Australia Country Challenge on home turf. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

Decorated country hockey player Renae Parsons is hoping to use her experience to help the WA Country women’s side shine in their home State.

Parsons is the assistant coach of the WA Country women’s side for the Hockey Australia Country Challenge that starts in Albany on August 6.

There will be five Lower Great Southern Hockey Association players in the State women’s outfit – which Parsons herself has twice represented as a player.

Parsons has played for the Australian Women’s Country team on international tours and said a move into coaching had provided a new challenge.

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Manypeaks' Renae Parsons at three quarter time.
Picture: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser
Camera IconRenae Parsons addresses players in a LGSHA game. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

She will be an assistant under Tenille Yandle, who is entering her third year in charge of the women’s side.

“Obviously I hadn’t thought it much about the coaching side of things until I couldn’t play but I do enjoy it,” Parsons said.

“I think I’ll be like a soundboard to the coach, another set of eyes.

“I might get the rotations or something like that but mainly it’s being another point of view.”

Parsons said it was exciting to have the national country championships on her home turf.

“This will be huge for Albany,” she said.

“We have a state of the art turf now and I don’t think we’ve had the chance to utilise that yet with other teams travelling here.

“It will be really good for young up and coming kids to come down and watch this level of hockey.”

Renae Parsons relaxes on the farm.
Camera IconRenae Parsons relaxes on the farm. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

Parsons has fond memories of her trips with representative teams and although WA are playing in their home State, she said the championships will again be a special time for this year’s group.

“Tournaments like this you don’t really get together beforehand,” she said.

“Then you are under each other’s feet for 10 or so days and by the end of it you are almost like family.

“You form friendships you have for life.

Manypeaks' Renae Parsons gets her side moving.
Picture: Laurie Benson Albany Advertiser
Camera IconParsons playing for her club Manypeaks. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

“Looking after your body over that week is a big thing and it’s a level above what most have played before, especially the physicality of the other teams.

“The team we’ve got now is very strong and it’s just a matter of getting everyone to gel.”

The Hockey Australia Country Challenge will be hosted by the LGSHA from August 6-13 in Albany.

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