Ladies 1s Star Emily Atkinson Calls it a Day
By Surbiton HC
Emily Atkinson will hang up her stick as the L1 complete their final friendly game of a disrupted 2020/21 season.
Since joining SHC in 2013, ‘Atko’ has been at the heart of the first team’s domestic success both on and off the pitch. As well as winning seven National titles, she has only missed two regular season league games in eight years and has been an ever present in Europe matches and the Playoff Championships.
Usually deployed as an attacking half back, Atko is renowned for her silky skills and a great eye for the ball. She contributed 16 goals during her time at the club and was also voted the Ladies 1s Player of the Year in the 2015/16 season.
Off the pitch, Atko has places high value in the wider club and has always been a willing volunteer and driver for fundraising. She played a key role in bringing the successful Women’s European Hockey Club Champions Cup to Sugden Road in 2018, putting in an incredible amount of behind the scenes work to help make the club’s vision a reality.
Atko comments, "This is without a doubt the best club and I have loved every minute with the girls I’ve played with over the last 8 years. I have loved it all - it's very hard to put into words how much it all means. The true beauty of sport is the bonds you make last for such a long time and I will never be far from Surby!"
L1 coach Brett Garrard says, “Consistency, commitment and the ability to play under pressure are key areas that I look for in any player and Atko has these qualities in abundance. She managed to play 155 games in her 8 seasons, a record that I doubt will ever be broken. Never missing a training session, always willing to help others and most of all always put the team first - characteristics that have always set the benchmark for all our players to follow. Atko has added so much to the team and club during her time at SHC and I wish her well in the next chapter."
As SHC Press Officer Colin Pike noted on social media, “Atko would be an automatic member of the SHC Hall of Fame.”
Best wishes to Atko and fiancé Patch for their upcoming wedding... and a few more free weekends from now on! Congratulations on a fantastic SHC career, Emily.