Argentine Lucina Von Der Heyde is named Best Young Player in Hockey World Cup

The 21-year-old dedicated the award to her team and her family.

Photo courtesy of Facebook Fan Page Luchii Von Der Heyde

Lucina Von Der Heyde, midfielder for the women’s Argentina Hockey team, was awarded ‘Best Young Player’ for this year’s hockey World Cup.

Although the team known as Las Leonas (the lions) played well throughout the competition, they were knocked out in the quarterfinals by Australia, which was a huge blow. However, Von Der Heyde, nicknamed Luchi, will leave the world cup with a smile after receiving her award.

“The talented 21-year-old Argentine showed great potential during the London World Cup,” wrote the International Federation of Hockey. “Winner of the Junior World Cup 2015, Lucina has been getting better each year. Despite not reaching the finals this year, the Lions had a shining star in their ranks which without doubt will lead her team to glory in the future.”

The midfielder from Athletic Club River Plate played in the 2016 Rio Olympics with the Argentine selection, who came seventh overall, but this was her first time playing in a World Cup. Despite her youth, Von Der Heyde has a mature attitude towards sport and an excellent sporting spirit.

“This prize is for the whole team,” she said, reported Milenico. “You don’t play alone. I want to dedicate this to my mum, whose birthday is today, my dad, my two sisters and the rest of my family.”

“No permitas que el fracaso les deteriore la autoestima. Cuando ganas, el mensaje de admiración es tan confuso, te estimula tanto el amor hacia uno mismo y eso deforma tanto. Y cuando perdes sucede todo lo contrario, hay una tendencia morbosa a desprestigiarte, a ofenderte ,solo porque perdiste. En cualquier tarea se puede ganar o perder, lo importante es la nobleza de los recursos utilizados, eso si es lo importante; lo importante es el tránsito, la dignidad con que recorrí el camino en la búsqueda del objetivo. Lo otro es cuento para vendernos una realidad que no es tal” Ayer nos despedimos de este mundial,y no hay palabras que describan la tristeza que sentimos. En un torneo en el que fuimos de menor a mayor, buscando nuestra mejor versión y creciendo partido a partido;nos vamos con la frente en alto, con la tranquilidad de haber dejado todo en la cancha y sin reprocharnos nada. No quedan más que palabras de agradecimiento para todos los que nos acompañaron en este sueño. Cerca o lejos, desde el lugar que pudieron , fuimos más que 18 leonas en la cancha! Porque cuanto más cuesta más se disfruta, y lo bueno del deporte es que siempre da revancha! Juntas llegamos, juntas nos vamos. Gracias! #TodosSomosUno

A post shared by Luchi (@luchivdh) on

“…Yesterday we said goodbye to this World Cup, there are no words to describe the sadness we feel,” she wrote in an Instagram post. “In a tournament where we went from less to more, searching for the best version of ourselves and growing match by match; we leave with our heads held high, safe in the knowledge of having left everything on the pitch and without reproaching ourselves anything […] the more it costs the more you enjoy it, and the good thing about sport is there is always a change to get revenge! We came together, and we leave together. Thankyou!”

Hockey’s popularity has grown in Argentina over recent decades and the country has a large pool of talent in the sport. Delfina Merino, who played in the 2012 London Olympics where the team got a silver medal, and 23-year-old María José Granatto both won the prizes of best player and best young player of the world in 2017 for their ability on the field.

The Hockey World Cup is one of the most coveted prizes in the sport along with the Olympics. The competitions takes place every four years, staggered to leave two years between World Cup and the Olympics. This year was the first time the tournament included 16 teams, in order to allow for more games to enjoy during the group stages.

The Hockey World Cup is split across the year for male and female teams. For example, the women’s competition took place in London, England during July and August, whereas the men’s competition will take place in November and December in Bhubaneswar, India.

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