Howie ready for more

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NEWTON Mearns hockey ace Alison Howie admits her taste of senior action with Scotland this year has well and truly whetted her appetite for 2013.

Despite 2012 coming too soon for Howie’s Olympic ambitions, it was still a big year for the midfielder as she entered her final year as an under-21.

And the 21-year-old didn’t disappoint, helping Scotland claim bronze at July’s EuroHockey Junior Championships II.

But the former Craigholme School pupil’s success stemmed beyond her age group as she was called up for her first senior cap a month before as Scotland took on South Africa at the home of her club Milne Craig Clydesdale Western.

And with a senior European Championships taking place next year, as well as a trip to Rio for the World Series, Howie is desperate to ensure she is not just a one hit wonder.

“I had a pretty busy 2012 as in the summer I was winning a bronze medal at the under-21 
European Championships and then I also won my first senior cap,” said Howie, who benefits from being on the Bank of Scotland Local Heroes Initiative.

“My aim going into the year was to get some time with the seniors and to do at my home club, with all my family and friends down there watching me was brilliant.

“With 2012 being my final year as an under-21, I was keen to show my worth with the seniors and hopefully I did that.

“The competition is always tough but I was just trying to break in and play well and try and hold down a spot for myself and I think I made an impression because last month I was invited down to a GB training camp, so that is a good sign.

“There are some big senior competitions to look forward to next year and I will be training hard over the winter to make sure I can play my part in them”.

Howie’s determination to break into the first team is understandable with a home 
Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014 looming large on the horizon.

And having tasted firsthand the excitement surrounding London 2012, the Strathclyde University student admits she is already counting down the days.

“I went down to London and saw a few of the men’s and women’s games and it was fantastic and it really got my 
thinking about the 
Commonwealth Games,” she added.

“That is the aim now, to get into the squad for that because the Olympics was fantastic and as a Scot the Commonwealth Games will be just as amazing”.