You must pay a big price to get to the Olympic Games.
For the Canadian ladies’ national discipline hockey crew, that’s no longer only a figurative declaration. It’s quite literal as accurately.
After all authorities investment becomes withdrawn from the crew in 2017, our Canadian girl’s field hockey players were faced with a robust selection if they desired to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
They knew they desperately needed to enhance, something that’s as a substitute robust without the means to travel and playsuits.
Instead of giving up, they’ve gone full velocity beforehand.
Last August, 22 Canadian girl athletes uprooted their lives, leaving the circle of relatives and buddies in the back of. Moving to Europe, stationed at distinctive golf equipment in the course of Belgium and Holland, the group is an extended way far away from the countrywide team’s headquarters in Victoria.
“This 12 months we are spending about 10 months far away from home,” said Team Canada ahead Stephanie Norlander via email from Belgium. “Since September we had been centralized in Belgium, schooling because of the Canadian National Team throughout the week and competing with nearby golf equipment on the weekend. It is a super set up in phrases of hockey as it lets in us to play a high degree sport every weekend which we can not do in Canada.”
The sacrifices are tremendous. Some members of the crew want to drive two and a 1/2 hours to get to the countrywide group’s domestic base in Belgium, spending to a few nights per week at a teammate’s region — frequently at the floor or couch.
These are the harsh realities for a team that’s functioning in a pay-to-play version, even as trying to acquire their Olympic dream.
Athletes do acquire a month-to-month stipend, but they’ve had to pay a majority of it again to Field Hockey Canada.
Crowdfunding a dream
“To get to the Olympics our first step is putting top- within the World Series Finals being held in Valencia, Spain in June,” says Norlander.
If they could try this, they’ll move on to a two-game aggregate rating playoff, that could punch their price tag to the Olympics. The different way for Canada to get to Tokyo 2020 is prevailing the Pan Am Games tournament in Lima, Peru this July.
With the crew’s cognizance on Valencia, they’ve grown to become to crowdfunding for help.
The crew says the full price of competing in Valencia is about $75,000, with journey totaling $40,000, and meals and accommodation costing an additional $35,000.
This is coming at the heels of a successful experience to Seville – paid out of pocket through the athletes – in which Canada picked up two wins and two ties in 4 matches against the 7th-ranked group from Spain. The crew additionally picked up wins and a relationship in six fits towards tenth-ranked China.
As of Friday afternoon, Team Canada had raised over $22,000 – 30 in line with a cent of the manner to their $75,000 intention.
Just 12 nations will earn their ticket to Tokyo, and regardless of now not qualify for the ladies’ Olympic event considering 1992, Canada believes they may be one of them.
Currently ranked 21st inside the international, handiest Argentina (No. Four), USA (12), and Chile (16) presently location ahead of them within the Americas.
The team believes they are higher than that rating could advise, after completing 5th at the 2018 Commonwealth Games – the friendly a Canadian discipline hockey team (men’s or ladies) has ever accomplished in the event. Canada has continuously beaten groups in advance of them in the standings like South Africa and Belarus, in addition to earning tremendous consequences (win or tie) against top teams from the Netherlands (No. 1), Germany (five), New Zealand (6), and Ireland (eight).