One on One with Daniel Sibbald

Wed, 03/12/2014 - 16:14

Daniel Sibbald is working his way up the hockey ranks with 10 SA Mens and 6 SA U21 caps under his belt at the age of 20. Daniel played most of his hockey at Glenwood Boys High School in 2011 and captaining his 1st team in 2012. Daniel talks on his success so far in his career and on making his transition into playing hockey at the highest level.

we will put our bodies on the line, and we will play for the full 70 minutes.

Name Daniel Sibbald
Date of Birth 11/11/94
Weight 63 kg
Height 165 cm
Most goals 3 vs Hilton College in my Matric year
Position Mid-fielder, Striker

Achievements and Major Teams

Achievements and Major Teams
Qualifications Level 1 Hockey Coach
Field Hockey      1st Team School – 2011 - 2012 Captain
Club Placing Riverside - 3rd (2011) and 1st (2012 and 2013)
Club Placing Varsity College - 4th (2014 )
Awards Varsity College - Players’ Player of the Year’ & ‘Player of the Year 2014’
KZN U12 2006 (Captain)
KZN U13A 2007
KZN U14A 2008
KZN U16A 2010 (Captain)
KZN U18B 2011 (Vice Captain)
KZN U21A 2012 (Captain)
KZN Men’s A (Raiders) 2012 and 2014
SA U18 2012
SA U21 2013
Junior World Cup Played in 2013
SA Mens Team Played in Tour to Argentina
2014 Commonwealth games Non Traveling reserve
SA Mens Team Played in Tour to Britain 2014
SA Men’s 32 Man squad To play in Olympic qualifiers and Olympics for 2015
SA U21 Caps 6
SA Mens Caps 10
Indoor Hockey KZN U21a – 2012
Indoor Hockey KZN Men’s – 2013, 2014
Indoor Hockey 1st Team School – 2011
Indoor Hockey 1st Team School – 2012 Captain

Coaching Experience  

Riverside Mini Hockey (2012 and 2013)
School Coaching (Various schools)
Coached school u14a side to a unbeaten no draw season.
Coached at Dutch Clinic held in Natal (January 2013)
Run the big tots (U4 - U6) hockey program  at Riverside hockey club (biggest club in KZN ) in 2014       

Can you tell us a bit about your high school hockey days at Glenwood Boys High School?
Daniel Sibbald: My hockey in Glenwood was never my first passion but tennis was, I started to see the light in Grade 10 and made the first team in Grade 11 under Coach Justin Collins. Playing in the first team at Glenwood was awesome, the passion and vibe the team had was an unforgettable one. The turf being a good three km's away ensured me and my other boarding school friends that we where always fit for the season.

You played for the SA men’s hockey team almost fresh out of high school, how did that make you feel and what challenges did you have to overcome? Also, what have you learnt so far during this period of your career?
Daniel Sibbald:  It was a huge surprise when I got a call up straight after school but it was such an honor. My first camp was in Cape Town, adapting to the change was tough but the guys in the team made it a bit easier and made me feel really welcomed. Just being able to train with the top hockey players in the country has really put it into prospective on how hard you have to train and the work ethics you need. I have learnt so much these last two years but I'm still young and I know that I still have a lot to learn.

My first highlight must be getting my first cap in Argentina

Can you go through some of your highlights and low-lights for you this year?
Daniel Sibbald: My first highlight must be getting my first cap in Argentina vs Argentina, the crowds and the support we got over there made it that much more special. A week later I was given an opportunity to play Germany where I scored my first international goal in front of a Cape Town home crowd. My Low light has to be missing a sitter vs Scotland in the Investic cup in London, we did end up winning the game 3-0 though.

What are your long term and short term goals for hockey?
Daniel Sibbald: My short term goals are to make the team in March to play in the World League and my long term goals are obviously to give myself the best opportunity to make the Olympic team and to go to a World cup and a Commonwealth games.

Don't ever count South Africa out.

What impact do you think the SA national side will have at the 2016 Olympics?
Daniel Sibbald: Don't ever count South Africa out. We will never have the same preparation and funding as the other teams but everyone in the SA side is so passionate and play the sport for the love of the game that no matter who we come up against we will play for the teammates around us, we will put our bodies on the line, and we will play for the full 70 minutes.

What are your own personal goals ahead of the Olympics 2016 in Rio?
Daniel Sibbald: I would obviously love to go to Rio Olympics but I know I am still young and have a lot to learn, but that's not going to stop me to absolutely train hard, preform when I need to and give myself the best chance to make the team.

Finding a balance between your sport, social life, and studies is hard but crucial for any sportsman

What’s your motto in life?
Daniel Sibbald: To be honest I have never had one particular motto in my life, I have always been a pretty self motivated person and I would do or try my best in everything I do.

How do you balance your studies, social life, and your sporting career?
Daniel Sibbald: I would be lying if I said this year was not tough, especially on my studies. Being away for weeks at a time put a lot of strain on my studies, but if it sounds like I am complaining I am not because it is worth it. My social life definitely had to slow down and a lot of sacrifices were made, but finding a balance between your sport, social life, and studies is hard but crucial for any sportsman.

Growing up when did you know you had a love for hockey, and as you grew up when did you know that playing hockey was your calling?
Daniel Sibbald: Tennis was always my number one sport, I did play hockey but never seriously. In my grade 11 year I joined a club side (Riverside) and just the team dynamics and vibe that was in the team and the work ethic was a huge eye-opener and that's where I think my love for the game started.

The road to the top will never be a smooth one, don't ever think of those 10 reasons to quit but think of those thousands of reasons not to give up.

What advice can you give young athletes who would like to emulate your example and make the most from their talents and opportunities?
Daniel Sibbald: In my Grade 11 year I made the KZN U18B team, it was an achievement for me as I was never really a hockey player, we ended up winning that IPT in the B section and getting promoted. A year of hard work and dedication and a year later I was captaining the KZN U18A and making my first national side. So don't ever give up, the road to the top will never be a smooth one, don't ever think of those 10 reasons to quit but think of those thousands of reasons not to give up.

How are you finding adjusting to hockey at the highest level?
Daniel Sibbald
: It's tough, the speed and physical aspect of it is unbelievable. The guys in the team are super supportive and their input and advice, and even criticism have made it that much easier. The coach (Fabian Gregory) is not afraid to tell me if I have done something wrong, but he has helped me immensely on and off the field.

Which of your SA men’s hockey teammates would you say have helped you a lot in making the transition into the team?
Daniel Sibbald: Wade Paton, a former Durban boy, has always been someone I could talk to even before my first call up, just to help me with my hockey or even helping with Varsity choices etc. I played club with Wade (Paton) and Tim Drummond and also played in the mid-field with them so they have been a huge help for me in the transition to the national set up. And then basically the whole team, all the experienced guys have been really awesome and helpful and I have learnt so much from them.

YSN thanks Daniel Sibbald for his time and wishes him all the best for the future.

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