Editor’s Note: Junior goalkeeper Suzie Zigante has been selected to play for the Croatian National Team when they participate in the Balaton Cup Women's International Tournament in Hungary in early August. She will send a blog periodically to tell of her experience playing for her national team.
Yesterday I had practice with the women's national team goalkeeper coach. He didn't come with us to Hungary, so he has never seen me in his life. In fact, he didn't even know I played with the team in Hungary. He didn't know that I was 19 almost 20. He thought I was younger, so it was definitely good he saw me to put my name back in the system!
I trained with two 16-year old boys, and they didn't say a word to me which is fine. The coach didn't know a word of English. But for the first time, I had a translator. Remember from the previous blog posts that I was going to train with the U-17 men’s national team keeper? Well he was there but he was resting from his tryout in Italy. He knew English better than anyone I have met here so far! He was super nice and translated everything for me. I get to train with him today, and the coach I trained with on my first training session here.
By the way, if you are a keeper here I have noticed that if you do not wear keeper pants and a long jersey they don't take you seriously. (Unless it’s a game). All keepers train with their long sleeves on, some with long shorts and their socks pulled up. Luckily I usually always wear that kind of stuff so I was prepared. Now especially today where we were on old turf. Like don't take the turf for granted at Womble or JBL it’s amazing. The old turf hurts to slide on even with pants and a jersey.
We worked pretty hard. They told me if I couldn't keep up with the boys I was allowed to rest whenever I wanted. NO WAY! I was keeping up no matter how tired I might be.
So I did just that, it was like jump over cones two-footed and dive, and then wait for the other two keepers to do it and then go again. There was shuffling through the cones but forward and back. We did balls coming into the box with pressure in the way. We did all sorts of diving exercises, it only lasted an hour but it was short and tough but a good little workout.
I was supposed to go to the Dinamo game at night, but I was so tired from travel the day before and practice, and the people I was going to go with were tired too, so I stayed home and slept. Sleep is good.
On another note, the Swedish Women’s wrestling team was at the grocery store today. That was interesting. They looked like they could kill anyone in a second. You could see their muscles through their sweatpants and jackets. It was pretty scary.
Today I train with the Zagreb coach again and Andre the U-17 national team keeper.