MUM'S the word for teenage sportsman Daniel Petrie who has been picked to play hockey for England, writes TIM PRESCOTT.

The student says his mum, Michele, a former Tenbury player, inspired him to take up hockey.

“My mum definitely ignited my interest in hockey because I use to go along and watch her when she was still playing,” he said.

“From the age of 18 months I was hitting a ball around with a little stick on the sidelines at my mum's games and it has grown from there.”

Dan has been selected to attend the England Hockey National Age Group Academy just 12 months after he was rejected by the selectors.

The 16-year old impressed at a three-day England Hockey High Performance Assessment Camp at Lilleshalll.

He will now receive high level training from the country’s leading coaches.

It caps a tremendous 12 months for Dan, who is also a Ludlow Castle Motor Club member.

Dan made his first-team hockey debut for Stourport after performing a starring role in the under-16 Midland Championship title success.

He said: “I tried out last year with the England Age Group Academy but I didn’t get selected which was tough to take but I worked so hard last year as I was so determined to make it this time. IIt’s great to be selected and be recognised among the best players in your age group, it should be a brilliant experience.”

It’s been remarkable rise through national and club ranks for the teenager.

He said: “I was very nervous when I made my debut for the Stourport first team as I didn’t know what to expect and there is a lot more pressure than playing for the third or fourth team.

“But it’s been a really enjoyable season as the teams done well and I’ve come a long way as a player and I know I’m good enough to compete at this standard


Despite his success, Dan is refusing to get carried away and already has his sights set on his next goal.

He said “My aim is to try and break into the England Under-18 squad by the end of the year and then ultimately make it as a professional player.

“But I’ve got a lot to work on first as just being a good player doesn’t mean you automatically make it you need to be incredibly fit as clubs are looking for the complete package on and off the pitch.”