This week, Shona McCallin announced her retirement from International Hockey.
Shona has become an integral part of our Women’s 1st XI and is central to the phenomenal start they have had to the current season. She is a player and a person that all of us at RHC are immensely proud to be able to call “one of our own” and whilst she is closing the book on her International career, is looking forward to her next chapter with Reading and beyond hockey.
Shona’s incredible International achievements include:
She announced her retirement by saying:
“Today, I announce my retirement from International Hockey. This decision has not come lightly, but after many hours of thought, I know now the time is right They say when you know you know.
Over the last 10 years, interspersed with more injuries than I would have liked, I have been fortunate to be part of some of the most successful of times with GB and England: Olympic, Commonwealth and European Gold Medals plus an Olympic Bronze Medal in Tokyo. Being able to share these moments with team-mates, staff, friends and family will stay with me forever.
However, over the last few months, I’ve come to realise that the mental and physical energy required to be part of the centralised program is just not there anymore. I am not, and never will be, someone who can only commit to something 80% or 90%.
After careful consideration, and consultation with family and close friends, I have decided that it is time to hang up my stick when it comes to International hockey. It’s time to pass the number 24 shirt to someone new, who I hope can wear it with the same pride, grit and determination I did every single game. Train hard so matches are easier.
I am incredibly thankful for the support I’ve received recently whilst making this difficult decision, especially from my family and close friends. Some have been with me from the very start, 6-year-old Shona starting at Newark Hockey Club.
I would also like to express my gratitude to my coaches, teammates, and all the staff who have been part of my hockey journey. Many are friends for life, and that is the power sport can have. I am not saying goodbye to the world of hockey entirely. I am continuing to play and coach with Reading Hockey Club whilst continuing to put effort into my new supplement business, The Ten Per Cent Club. I am excited about what the future will hold.
As the Great Britain squad work towards an important part of their Paris Qualification journey, I want to wish the players and staff all the best for the upcoming months.”
Photo: Helen Ritchie