Dealing with pressure and crazy long days isn’t new to Queensland Reds player Lucy Lockhart. Before the 25-year-old earned her spot in this year’s inaugural Super W season, the Australian Army Corporal was based in Dubai for four months, acting as a middle point between the Australian Army and task groups in Afghanistan and other areas in the Middle East.
“We were the connection between Australia and Afghanistan, or whatever operation we were on at that stage. We’d be transporting all the stores and equipment from Australia to the country,” she says.
“I didn’t get the chance to go into the war zone, but I was part of the bigger picture with regards to logistics. It was very intense. We were working around 16 hours a day, seven days a week for the four months. It was a very busy schedule. We didn’t have much downtime but it was a great experience.”
Not that Lucy gets much downtime at the moment in her hometown of Brisbane. Her days start with a cardio session before she has to be at work at 7.30am. When she finishes her workday at 4pm, she has a spare 90 minutes to study for her education and science degree (she’s studying a full-time load), then she’s training at 6pm and back at home at 8.30pm.
"Then I do it all again,” she laughs.
This week, her team will be playing NSW in the Super W grand final – and Lucy’s determined to be holding up the winner’s trophy at the end of it.
“I just want to show everyone what I’m capable of,” she says.
"The army has shown me to lead by example and that transfers onto the rugby field.”
Leading by example means that Lucy hopes more girls will start playing the game after watching this Super W season. And with stats from Rugby Australia showing that girls make up around 40 percent of rugby's pathway programs, it’s a trend that’s definitely on the rise.
“You can play rugby no matter what size you are, no matter what age you are,” Lucy says. “You can join a team and there’s going to be no judging from anyone on the team and you gel so well when you play that first game. You play for each other and with each other.”
Watch the Super W grand final between Queensland and NSW live at Allianz Stadium in Sydney or on Fox Sports 503 from 4.45pm AEST Friday.