CULBURRA Public School hockey young gun Sam Wright-Smith will go head to head with the country’s best next month as a part of the NSW PSSA boy’s hockey team.
The year five student was picked for the squad after impressing selectors on June 24 to 26 at the NSW PSSA boy’s hockey titles in Lyneham, Canberra.
Sam was a part of the South Coast representative team along with Kangaroo Valley Public School’s Joe Thomas and James Good, and Sanctuary Point Public School’s Scott Crisafi.
Coached by Gary Baxter, South Coast played well in the tournament, defending strongly and finished fifth out of 12 regional teams.
“I was really happy with how I played especially as it was really cold in Canberra – it was minus one,” he said.
After the final presentation Sam was announced as one of two South Coast players to make the state team.
“I was kind of really surprised because I am only in year five and not many people make it in year five,” Sam said.
Sam plays inner and wing and said he was excited about the week-long tournament starting August 3.
“I have never been to Tasmania before so am looking forward to going there and representing NSW,” hes aid.
“Hopefully I can score a goal and get my name out there.”
The 11-year-old has played hockey since he was seven-years-old and has played in the South Coast PSSA team since he was in year three.
It will be a busy couple of months for Sam, who is off to compete in Grafton on July 17 to play for Illawarra in the NSW under 13s state hockey titles.
He will then travel to a state training camp on July 25 in preparation for nationals.
In the lead-up to the tournament, Sam has been busy fundraising and selling raffle tickets to fund his trip.
When the South Coast Register talked to him on Tuesday he was helping out his grandfather with Meals on Wheels and selling raffle tickets to the volunteers.
“I sold a whole book of tickets,” he said.
“It’s really good, it teaches me that I have to put in the hard work if I want to go.”
Sam is still looking for sponsors.
If you would like to support him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.