Olivia Merry is New Zealand’s goal scorer extraordinaire. The Black Sticks striker finished the FIH Hockey Pro League as top goal scorer and scored the goal in the 2019 Oceania Cup that sent the Black Sticks to Tokyo as continental champions. She is looking forward to continuing her scoring habits throughout 2020.
Each of the Hockey Stars interviews published on the FIH website are with the nominees for Best Player. The winning athletes will be announced in February.
What does the nomination for FIH Best Player mean to you?
Olivia Merry: “I guess it is a reflection on the hard work that the team puts in and I’m just lucky to be nominated. If I’m honest, I was pretty surprised to see my name there bu I’m pleased to be sure.”
Looking back to 2019 what was your best and most memorable moment?
Olivia Merry: “Qualifying for the Olympics at the Oceania Cup was a big highlight for us. Not just me personally but the whole team. We put in a couple of really good performances and it was pretty awesome so that was definitely one of the highlights.”
Why do you think 2019 was such a good year for you?
Olivia Merry: “I’ve been asked this question a few times and I don’t really know the answer but I think I was just enjoying it and having fun. Also, it is probably the environment and really being able to express yourself is really key but most of all, having fun.”
What are your dreams and aspirations for this year?
Olivia Merry: “We have obviously got Tokyo and that is a really big ambition for us. We want to medal in Tokyo, and not just medal but win gold. But there are a lot of processes and a lot of time before then and we have to put consistency and performance throughout the year in that and I guess it starts with Pro League. We want to better than we did last year in that, and we want to put in some good performances in Pro League because that will put us in good stead for the rest of the year.”