Hockeyroo Ashleigh Nelson announces retirement

Hockeyroo Ashleigh Nelson announces retirement

Finishes on 205 caps

Author: Holly MacNeil/Friday, 14 July 2017/Categories: Hockey Australia NewsHockeyroos

Hockeyroos star forward and proud West Australian Ashleigh Nelson has announced her retirement from the sport. Ashleigh’s decision comes following rehabilitation from a knee injury which ruled her out of contention for last year’s Rio Olympic Games.

First debuting in 2007 Ashleigh, from Wagin in WA, played against Japan in a test series held in Adelaide where the Hockeyroos defeated Japan 1 – 0.

Nelson’s impressive career has seen highlights including Commonwealth Games gold in Glasgow 2014, silver at the 2014 World Cup in the Hague, and competing at the 2012 London Olympic Games. 

A stand out moment for Nelson was her 200th game in front of a home crowd at the Perth Hockey Stadium, a game which the Hockeyroos drew 1 – all with Great Britain.

Following a year where she worked tirelessly to rehabilitate her ACL, Nelson came to the decision that after ten years playing international hockey, now was the time to move forward and enjoy and focus on other parts of her life.

Commenting on her retirement, Nelson said: “I would like to thank my family first and foremost. Being an elite athlete requires so much support and my parents and brothers have been there through every hiccup and breakthrough. 

“Without their support I would have almost definitely not persisted in initial years of being within the team. My partner Aaron also deserves so much recognition. As athletes we often put ourselves or what we are doing first and miss important occasions. Given this fact it would be easy for all athletes partners to not be supportive of what we do, but he has been there every step of the way which I am so thankful for. 

“Finally my team mates. They are what I will miss most about playing hockey. Sport makes you meet and spend time with all kinds of people and I have been very fortunate to become friends with some amazing women who maybe in another life would have never had the chance to cross paths with. There is nothing better than going to work and spending time with people that continue to surprise, inspire and make you laugh day in day out.” 

Following a successful career in hockey, Ashleigh would now love to continue to be involved in the sport to some degree – be that commentating, operations or player management. 

Ashleigh Nelson Career History 
Career Caps: 205 
Career Goals: 69
Debut game: 18/7/2007 Test Series v Japan. AUS 1 – 0 JPN
Final game: 10/4/2017 Hawkes Bay Cup. AUS 3 - 1 CHI

Tournament History
Year/Competition/Location/Finishing Position 

2015 World League Final Rosario, Argentina 6th 
2015 Oceania Cup Stratford, New Zealand 1st
2015 World League Semi-Final Antwerp, Belgium 3rd
2014 Champions Trophy Mendoza, Argentina 2nd
2014 Commonwealth Games Glasgow, Scotland 1st
2014 World Cup The Hague, Netherlands 2nd
2013 World League Finals Tucuman, Argentina 2nd
2013 Oceania Cup       Stratford, New Zealand 1st
2013 World League Semi-Finals London, England 1st
2012 Olympic Games London, Great Britain 5th
2011 Champions Trophy Amstelveen, Netherlands 6th
2011 Oceania Cup Hobart, Australia 2nd
2010 Commonwealth Games Delhi, India 1st
2010 World Cup Rosario, Argentina 5th
2009 Champions Trophy Sydney, Australia 2nd
2009 Oceania Cup Invercargill, New Zealand 2nd