Dunmow’s GB hockey star Chloe Rogers aims for the World Cup

DUNMOW hockey star Chloe Rogers is preparing for a massive few months as she aims to help England and Great Britain to glory at three of the biggest competitions in the sport.

The 25-year-old will be part of the England squad for the Champions Trophy in Nottingham from July 10-18, and will then be a key player in the GB squad for the Women’s World Cup in Argentina from August 30 to September 12, and at the Commonwealth Games in India from October 3 to October 14.

Chloe, who is part of the full-time GB training squad for the 2012 London Olympics, is looking forward to the competitions, but admits three big events in such a short space of time will bring added pressures.

She said: “In 2006 we had the same amount of tournaments with a World Cup qualifier instead of the Champions Trophy, but they were spread out a bit more. To have three huge tournaments back-to-back is more intense than we have experienced before.

“We get back from Argentina and have seven days at home then we are off to India. It will be a crazy time! It’s going to be hard on the body and a tough period, but I can’t wait.”

England hosts the Champions Trophy next month where the top six teams in the world will do battle. Chloe expects home advantage to be key as England take on Argentina, the Netherlands, Germany, China and New Zealand.

“We finished sixth last year but had a young side and were in the development stage,” said Chloe, who helped her club Leicester to the treble last season. “I hope we can improve on that and I’m sure the huge home support can help us.

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“It will be nice not to be in the fifth/sixth place play-off and to finish as one of the top four teams in the world would be awesome.”

Following that, there is a long trip to Argentina for the 2010 Women’s Hockey World Cup in August.

“In the last World Cup we just missed out on the semi-final, but we have improved this time around and I hope we can make the semi at least. That would be a good achievement,” said Chloe.

“The Champions Trophy and the World Cup are the biggest events for us hockey wise, as they affect our world ranking and have got all the strongest teams in the world competing. If we could do well and reach the semis at the World Cup, it would be a good lead up to the Commonwealth Games.”

The squad will have only a week to rest up back in England before jetting off to Delhi for the Commonwealth Games.

“The last Commonwealth Games in Melbourne was a great eye opener. Being in the GB team and experiencing the whole village atmosphere was amazing. It was great to be a part of.

“We won a medal in Melbourne which is one of my best achievements in the sport. The medal is beautiful, but I would like to get a gold to add to the collection!”

Chloe, who is currently touring local schools as part of the Team Essex Ambassador scheme, has come a long way since she first started to show promise with a hockey stick at Dunmow’s Helena Romanes School.

She said: “I started playing at primary school, but really got into the sport at Helena Romanes in year seven. PE teacher Carol Wooding really pushed and encouraged us.

“I loved sports and always dreamt of representing my country, but didn’t really believe it would happen. It all happened really quickly. I was picked for England under 16s, then into the under 18s, under 21s and the seniors.”

However, it could have been different for Chloe who could have been touring the world as a professional golfer instead.

In July 2007 she won the BUSA Women’s Individual Strokeplay Championship and as a result of this, she led the BUSA Women’s England team to victory in the Home Golf Internationals at the start of September 2007.

“I really enjoyed golf, but because I got to a higher level in hockey at a younger age, the decision to focus on hockey was an easy one,” she said.

“It’s funny as I see names I used to play against doing well in the professional game. One day I would like to go back and give it a go if I’m young enough!”

But for now she remains fully focused on her hockey career and helping England and Great Britain to glory.

She said: “I’m really looking forward to the next few months – it should be exciting times.”