(Note: interview done in June 1999)
Winnipeg will be your forth Pan American competition!
Multisport events are always great. More media exposure, meeting other
athletes, slowly building up a fan base throughout the two week tournament as
people start to realize that Canada is in the hunt for Gold!
Most memorable field hockey moment?
Winning the 1987 Pan Am Gold against Argentina! I played the last two
minutes with my hands in the air and the score 3-1. Ross Rutledge had just
undressed the keeper at the centre line, as Argentina pressed forward, and
ran the ball in for the clinching 3rd goal. Unbelievable!
Biggest international goal?
1989 Intercontinental Cup (World Cup Qualifier): Canada vs India in the
semi final. Nicki Sandhu played a 50 yard ball to me as I was streaking inside,
one touch into the circle ahead then I dove to chip it over the charging keeper.
My next recollection is the face first into the goalie pads followed by my
teammates piling on top of me to celebrate. I never saw the ball enter the
Major hockey influence?
Shiv Jagday: inspiring, his dedication and love of the game brings out
your best, almost as a thank you.
Other athletes you admire?
The Greats, Jordan, Gretzky, not so much because of their talent but
because of their consistency, perseverance and commitment. I often thought
about the challenges of being a professional athlete versus the challenges
faced by ourselves. What is more difficult? Same performance demands but
the pros have to face the media, earn a living and handle consistent
pressures while we deal with underfunding and balancing careers with work or
school. Which path gives you more?
Most significant moment in your career?
Looking to the 1991 Olympic Qualifier in New Zealand as a breakthrough
year; then the sad news that my father had been struck with cancer and I
returned to Vancouver. This gave me a new perspective on hockey: part of
life, not life itself! New goals, attitude and refocused dedication.
My Dad was the one who showed me the path to being here today. He took a
stand on the kind of people that I chose to hang around with and the activities
I got involved in. He supported me in sports he knew, ice hockey, basketball
and track and field, and also in a sport he was unfamiliar with, field hockey.
Lately, I've been wondering why it is that I chose to pursue the sport that
my Dad was less familiar with.
What kind of player are you?
Hard-working, extremely fit, team player, always available to lend support
or a helping hand. I remember talking to Rick Roberts about staying positive,
keeping things simple.
Who are you off the field?
Hockey is also about the circle of friendships. Teammates have always been
a significant part of my social life. I was recently married to Sandy and I
am now enjoying new friendships away from the game. Family life has taken on
greater significance in the last few years. It is challenging to find the time
with weekends and evenings committed to hockey.
Top 5 Places to Finish a Tour?
- La Chocolata, Mar del Plata, Argentina
- Pan Am Beach, Mar del Plata, Argentina
- Olympic Beer Garden, Seoul, Korea. Peter Milkovich and I managed a
courtesy bike ride home by way of the Russian cycling team! Pete tried the
no-hands approach. Bad idea!..
- Indianapolis, Pan American Games Delegates Hotel. Nothing can beat a Gold
- Belgian Hockey Centre, Brussels. Nothing like finishing a tour with some
beer drinking and dancing. The problem was I had a blown ankle which clearly
affected my performance on the dance floor. Deciding to fill the Gatorade
cooler and drain the bar taps after closing time was a bit optimistic!