Star-studded leadership group to drive Thundersticks women glory

The Perth Thundersticks women have voted in their leadership group for 2022, with a wealth of knowledge and success on the international, national and local stage set to lead the State’s premier hockey side into this year’s Sultana Bran Hockey One League season.

WASPs’ and Thundersticks veteran Kyra White will captain the side with Curtin University’s Penny Squibb and Victoria Park’s Rachel Frusher taking the vice-captaincy honours for 2022.

The leadership team was voted on by every player of the squad in a three-two-one format, with each member having the chance to say why they gave their particular selection three votes.

Coach Phil Hulbert said the system had been used by the WA Under-21 women and he thought it was a great way to select the team’s leaders.

“I think everyone really enjoys the system, the whole point is that everyone has different opinions,” Hulbert said.

“People might not necessarily always agree, but we think the girls should be brave enough to stand up and tell people why they think something.

“They are all leaders in the team in their own respect, so that is why this came about.”

All three leaders take in a resume boasting plenty of local success having won premierships in Hockey WA’s Premier League.

Hulbert said new captain White embodied the values of the team and was the right choice to lead Perth to a successful Hockey One season this year.

“Kyra obviously embodies all the values the team wants moving forward,” Hulbert said.

“They did a culture session in the last week and set some values and expectations for what they want to achieve, and they think she best embodies those values.

“I think she is a great choice, clearly all the girls respect her.

“She is very approachable and is obviously also a very good player.

“She has come back into the group and her leadership has been valued very highly.”

The first-year coach also had high praise for Hockeyroo and new vice-captain Penny Squibb, the country star from Tambellup, who Hulbert said was a great example for the younger members of the squad.

“Penny has had a few ups and downs, but her resilience has been really good over the last 18 months,” Hulbert said.

“She missed out on the Olympics, which was pretty hard for her.

“She has a really good voice around the group, and like the other two is really welcoming to all players and puts the team first.”

Hulbert is no stranger to vice-captain Rachel Frusher, with the pair having been the captain and coach of the Victoria Park women’s side who won back-to-back titles in 2020 and 2021.

The new coach said just like White and Squibb, Frusher was a Thundersticks star and a natural leader who would bring plenty to the group.

“Rachel I know quite well through being at Victoria Park and she is very similar to the other two,” Hulbert said.

“They are people who think about others first, which is what you look for in your leaders.”

The Thundersticks kick off their campaign when they host the Adelaide Fire at Perth Hockey Stadium at Curtin University on Saturday 1 October.

The Perth Thundersticks need your support this Sultana Bran Hockey One League season, with our first double header to be played at Perth Hockey Stadium at Curtin University on Saturday 1 October. Show your support by purchasing a membershipsecuring your tickets or through our Perth Thundersticks Player Partnership Program. We want all of WA behind our elite-level men’s and women’s teams!