A whirlwind two months is about to go up a notch for the Vantage Black Sticks’ newest player.
After making her debut in Cromwell in May, Auckland midfielder Lulu Tuilotolava will play in her first major event when the Vitality Women’s Hockey World Cup begins next week.
Having earned six caps since her initial call-up, which Tuilotolava described as a shock, the 21-year old is ready to take on the biggest challenge of her young career when New Zealand opens its campaign in London against Belgium, “it’s going to be a big step up from what I’m used to, but I’m expecting it so I will have to embrace and adapt to it.”
Coach Mark Hager believes it’s going to be a real learning curve for Tuilotolava, but says she’s a great character who has slotted in well and will embrace whatever role she’s given “she may play a lot of minutes, and I hope she does, but at this stage Lulu will come on and rest people. If she starts performing well, which we have confidence she will, she’ll give us a real ability up front to not only create goals but score them.”
Our Vantage Black Sticks head off to London tomorrow night after exploring the sights of Munich for their last day in Germany today. After tight losses to the Netherlands and Argentina and a win against Germany in the Four Nations Cup they will look at building on these performance as they finish their preparations ahead of the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup.
Check out our Facebook page to see Rikki Swannell’s interview with Lulu talking about her experience with the Vantage Black Sticks and next week’s World Cup.