United in recess but keen to return to Premier League Hockey fold

TACKLED: Bathurst City's Kelly Baker (right) takes the ball off Parkes rival Denise Gersbach in the women's Premier League Hockey competition. Photo: PHIL BLATCH
TACKLED: Bathurst City's Kelly Baker (right) takes the ball off Parkes rival Denise Gersbach in the women's Premier League Hockey competition. Photo: PHIL BLATCH

We’ll be back.

That’s the message from Parkes Hockey Incorporated publicity officer Denise Gersbach after both United men’s and women’s sides were forced to go into recess ahead of the 2018 Premier League Hockey season.

The retirement of a number of the club’s senior players meant depth for either side just wasn’t there in 2018, but with juniors on the rise Gersbach is confident Parkes teams could return to the PLH competition as soon as 2019.

This year’s men’s PLH season started two weeks ago while the women are scheduled to kick off round one on Saturday.

“It was disappointing … we had 10 players, just not enough to fill a team and the young ones coming through just aren’t there yet experience wise,” Gersbach said of the women’s side.

“But, absolutely, we’ll be back. We’ve got some great juniors that need that exposure but we just didn’t have the bank of players for this year.”

Parkes’ A grade women’s competition has five teams while the B grade premiership has nine, indicating a large enough player pool to filter through to the United teams is there.

“The men have struggled for a few years and shift work plays its part and that means we can’t get enough to travel, but there’s lots of juniors so they’ll be back as well,” Gersbach enthused.