Swifts and Wests players battle through the rainy conditions in last year's A-Grade grand final at the Ipswich Hockey Complex.
Swifts and Wests players battle through the rainy conditions in last year's A-Grade grand final at the Ipswich Hockey Complex. David Nielsen

Swifts coach upbeat after surgery

RECENT surgery on a dislocated right toe has given Ipswich player Megan Bool more time to concentrate on her coaching.

While she'd love to be having a run in Reserve grade this season, that isn't possible for some months after her latest operation in January.

She's still wearing a moon shoe as she plots her recovery.

However, last year's A-Grade coach is upbeat about the new season as a more settled Swifts team looks to challenge for another grand final.

"It's definitely a good feeling knowing we definitely have a team going into the season,'' she said.

"The first game last year, we were introducing each other in the change room before the game.

"We come together and it proved to be a really positive season.''

Bool injured her toe playing in last year's Reserve Grade grand final where Swifts beat Wests 3-2.

"It wasn't pleasant,'' the nurse said recalling the painful blow with the teams deadlocked at 2-2 with 25 minutes left.

She was assisted from the field in anguish, being dashed to the Ipswich Hospital before returning to coach the club's A-Grade side in their grand final.

Although Swifts lost 2-1 to Wests in the wet conditions, the courageous sports- woman admired what her team achieved.

"We were obviously disappointed not to win the grand final but from where we started the semi-final (in fourth place), we did really well,'' she said.

The Bluebirds start this year's Ipswich A-grade competition in better shape.

"We're reasonably positive about the start of the season,'' Bool said, preparing for her third year as A-Grade coach. "We're a lot further ahead than what we were last year.

"Most of the girls in the team have played hockey for a long time so they've definitely got the experience there. It's just the fitness and bringing it all together that generally doesn't take too long.''

Clinical Nurse Megan Bool is now using computer a tablet to help improve patient flow at Ipswich Hospital. Photo: David Nielsen / The Queensland Times
Clinical Nurse Megan Bool is now using computer a tablet to help improve patient flow at Ipswich Hospital. Photo: David Nielsen / The Queensland Times David Nielsen

Goalkeeper Molloy has been transferred to Newcastle after years of reliable service.

Smith is focusing on her Brisbane competition commitments.

Last year's Reserve Grade goalkeeper Michelle "Shelley'' Mabsout will take Molloy's spot guarding the net.

Bool is delighted to have senior players like captain Bridget McLean and Susie Marcussen keen to continue leading the side.

"Those girls playing together last year will only be better for them again this year having that familiarity playing with each other again,'' Bool said.

"Hopefully we're looking pretty good to start the season.''

While other A-Grade teams like defending premiers Wests have players involved in recent representative trials, Bool was content to ease into the new competition starting on March 10.

"As we showed last year, it's just a matter of getting to the semi-final,'' she said. "It is a long season so it's a matter of playing good hockey and being consistent throughout the season. Then you never really know what will happen.''

The team is training ons Thursday nights.

Megan fast tracks new role

FROM adversity, new opportunities can arise. Just ask Megan Bool. She sees knee and foot injury setbacks as a chance to fast track her transition to coaching.

"It is nice at the start of the year to concentrate on the girls and make sure we're doing what we need to be doing and stuff like that,'' she said. "I thought I'd eventually get to coaching but I didn't realise it would happen so quickly. It only kind of happened due to my injury.

"It is probably a bigger transition than what I thought but even me doing it the last two years, I've got a bit more confident in what I need to do and how I need to get the girls to play.''

Bool also gained valuable experience coaching last year's Ipswich masters team.

After suffering her dislocated toe last year, she said her nursing colleagues at Ipswich Hospital were "really helpful''.

"They got me in and out so I could make sure I could coach the girls, which was more of my concern,'' Bool said.

"It wasn't really about me or the toe, it was more to make sure I got back in time to coach the girls so they weren't left there on their own.''