19 September 2023

Trans Tasman foray for Cooktown underwater hockey stars

| Sarah Martin
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Cooktown teens Rocco and Sienna Thomason are headed for the Trans Tasman Underwater Hockey Championships this weekend.

Cooktown’s superstar Thomason siblings are putting the finishing touches to their training regime after being selected to represent Australia at the Trans Tasman Underwater Hockey Championships next week.

The teens, along with father Scott Thomason, who is Cooktown Crocs Underwater Hockey coach and will be assistant coach for the Australian team, fly out on 23 September for four days of action in Aukland.

“I’m really excited, and a little bit nervous,” 16-year-old Rocco said of his first international competition.

“I’m excited too, but not really nervous yet, although I do get nervous before the games,” 18-year-old sister Sienna said.

The siblings are no strangers to high level competition, having competed as part of the Queensland team at the past four national championships, and their proud dad said the pair have a good chance at selection for the 2024 world championships.

“I think they’ve got a pretty good chance, they’re part of an awesome team with a really strong core group,” Mr Thomason said.

“The Trans Tasmans are held on the alternating year to the world championships and how you play there has a big influence on the selection of the 12 best players who go to the 2024 World Championships in Malaysia.”

Mr Thomason said the youngsters had been training hard in and out of the pool in the lead up, as well as juggling work and study commitments.

“Even the training has been a learning curve, they’ve been training with school and work,” he said.

Sienna said the pair had been increasing their out of pool strength training alongiside the underwater skills and fitness.

The trio are looking forward to the high-level competition ahead of the Australian nationals in Cairns in early 2024, hopefully followed by the Malaysia World Championships.

“It’s going to be awesome for the team to play some really high-level hockey against players at their own age level,” Mr Thomason said.

“It’s going to be a learning curve for Sienna and Rocco, this is the first overseas competition for them but the coaches Anton and Ben are awesome.

“It’ll be good for me being assistant coach as well because usually it’s pretty hectic, I’m trying to coach under 15s and play and watch these guys but now I’ll be able to watch every game.”

The Cooktown team returns on Monday 2 October.

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