Darcy Bourne is an England U21 hockey player, who has been playing the sport from an early age. At just 18 years of age, she has been a successful member of the Surbiton Ladies Hockey Club.
During lockdown, she has been hard at work with her studies.
“Lockdown has been an interesting one as It’s been A-level year and a big change not taking any A-Levels, but it’s been nice for everything to calm down and to focus on individual training a bit more and just relax a little bit.” she said.
Darcy has already had two very successful years playing the sport she loves.
“I’ve been lucky enough to have been in the system since I was 16 when I captained both the Under 16 and 18 sides and I really am hoping to go as far as I can with England.” she said.
“When I was younger, I literally played every single sport and hockey was the last sport I started.” she said. “I used to play in the boy’s football team at school and then I decided that I had to start playing girls sports. Surbiton was my local club and some girls in my school joined Surbiton so I kind of just followed them and quickly just fell in love with the sport.”
Darcy will at some point in the future be heading across to the States to study.
“I’ve got a sports scholarship to go and study in America at University which will be exciting as it’s a good university for playing hockey.”
Hockey is a sport which predominantly attracts white people to play the game. She also wants to be classed as a role model in the sport.
“So when you play sport at a younger age you look up to role models, but at a younger age I think that would have discouraged me to start hockey, but I have never been discriminated against or any racist acts against me in hockey, so if anything it has encouraged me to try and make it all the way and be a role model character for younger girls. When you are on the team everyone is fighting for the same thing, you don’t really think about the colour of your own skin. I don’t feel it’s held me back at all.” she said.
There are currently only four BAME female athletes to have represented GB at a senior level in hockey.
“It’s a shame to see that because not just in hockey but in all other sports you have a lot of very athletic black people and it’s not like they’re not represented in other sports such as athletics, so for the representations of the governing bodies to be so low and it would be good to see a change in that regard.” she said.
To encourage more black people to play the sport Darcy puts it down to grass roots.
“That’s an issue with grassroots level and I think there are a few various organisations that are looking to reach out to more state schools and encourage people from the communities to get involved with hockey, so I think it would be good for England Hockey the governing body to put more funding into that area.” she said.
“There are certainly some charities and hockey clubs who don’t have resources to get those young kids involved. If there was a bit more media attention or more funding then that would be really helpful and I think just having bigger role models on their social media platforms would be really helpful and encourage kids to start and the parents would be keener to get their kids involved.” she added.
Darcy is very much behind the black lives matter movement and was recently pictured on a demonstration which went viral on social media.
“Previously a few celebrities had posted it on Twitter and that was exciting but when Martin Luther King’s son retweeted it this meant so much because the work that his father did and the work that he has done to fight for racial equality is great. I was completely overwhelmed when I saw that I realised then that it might have had some impact in the movement which was really nice to see.” she said.
To listen to the full interview, please click here.
This article was written exclusively for golear.co.uk