Player Spotlight – Polly Radnidge
What has been your favourite experience at your time at Fusion so far?
There’s been many experiences that I’ve had in fusion that stand out. But one of my favourites are the nights in Squamish where all the teams get together. We always seem to have the most fun together as a club. I also had a lot of fun on the Tukwila tournaments with the banquets, and the karaoke nights in the hotel rooms.
What areas have you noticed yourself improve?
When I was younger I always just used my speed to push it past the defenders. But as everyone became faster and stronger I had to think of something that could give me a head start. My 1V1 moves have gotten a lot better since Andrew started working on them with me. I ended up scoring a lot more goals after I improved those skills, and it helped my confidence a lot more.
At Fusion we pride ourselves on creating an environment where the team can develop. What has been the biggest difference you have seen in your team’s development?
I think confidence is a big thing my team has improved on. When we were younger we didn’t have the confidence for shooting, playing through balls and long balls. We were taught very hands on from a young age which slowly let us crack out of our shell and allowed us to feel more comfortable doing more things on the field. We began playing great balls and starting scoring more shots from further out.
As well as creating athletes and soccer players, we do try to give our players tools that you can take into day-to-day life. What are some lessons that you have learned at Fusion that have helped you socially or academically?
I’ve always been told to slow down and think things through before following through with something. My coaches have helped me to realize that I can’t go through everything at full speed. I became aware that not only would slowing down help me in soccer but school as well. Those few extra seconds can do a lot, and I’ve finally noticed how much it helps.
At the end of the day, we only have our players for a short period of time, so what are your plans or aspirations for life after U18? College? Professional? Academic?
A few months ago I was invited to play at UBC after I graduate from high school. Knowing that years of hard work and dedication had payed off made me really proud. Going for campus tours and ID camps at UBC has made me so excited for what my future holds. They’re such a great school and they’ve already made me improve on my game, plus making me wanting to do even better academically. I’m grateful that I have a school that’s so welcoming and I look forward to becoming a T-bird!
What are your personal soccer goals for the next phase or two?
My goal for the next phase is to become a more dynamic player on the field. I want to be a player that can positively effect the game for a whole 90 minutes, with every player on the opposing team being scared about what my next move will be. I push to be scoring goals every game and setting my teammates up with chances. I aim to be a leader on the field that can communicate to benefit my team. And a goal I think everyone on my team should have is to win provincials and go to nationals. It’s a long road but if we work together it’s very possible.