For keen athlete Veronica Ly, it really is the taking part that matters. While the excitement of winning is always a thrill, the sports-mad Year 10 student is just as happy to be part of the team.
Since joining ACG Parnell College in 2020, Veronica has become an invaluable member of the Girls Basketball, Football and Volleyball teams. Her outstanding attitude has seen her awarded the captaincy of the Girls Football team earlier this year. Plus, she has also been involved in an officiating capacity, umpiring games for the Senior A Girls Volleyball team.
The high-achieving 14-year-old shares her thoughts on sports, teamwork and what the future holds.
What appeals to you most about playing sports?
I enjoy playing sports because I can have fun, keep fit, make new friends, and put my full commitment into my team.
Do you feel it's important for students to be involved in sports?
For me, I do think it's important. I believe that at ACG, we are all well-rounded students and should not just focus on academic success.
How did you feel when you were named Captain of the Girls Football team?
I was extremely thrilled when I found out because all the girls are extremely hard-working, and it is an honour as well as a privilege to be able to captain a team of great players.
What do you believe is most important when playing sports – ability or enjoyment?
I believe that enjoyment is most important when playing sports. Although we all want to win, it is much better to have a happy team that faces an occasional loss than an unhappy team that's winning. The final score of the game does not represent the team as a whole.
Of all the sports you play at ACG Parnell College, which code is your favourite?
It's challenging to pick, but basketball is my favourite. I love how action-packed and fast-paced the game is.
What do you personally hope to achieve with regards to your sporting activities this year?
I would like to become a better well-balanced player overall, whether that is improving my own skill or getting closer to my teammates to result in a closer bond.
What have been your personal highlights when representing the school on the sports field?
Scoring the first goal for the Girls Football team in 2020 was definitely a highlight as we had a bit of a challenging season, so it felt honestly really wonderful to achieve that after preserving for a long time. Also, having an undefeated Girls Basketball team was another highlight last year as we worked hard together to create such a well-rounded team.
What lessons have you learned from sport that has been most useful in your everyday life?
Sport has taught me a lot of life lessons. Some of them include being able to take a loss, accepting the final outcome of a game, putting 110% effort even on a rough day, along with being a positive teammate. These are all skills that I would never have developed if I hadn't competed in sports for ACG.
Is it challenging to juggle your sporting commitments with the time needed for study?
Juggling sporting commitments with study can be challenging at times. But I become very motivated after a great basketball training or a football match, which means I procrastinate less and just get my work done twice as fast – and to the same high standard I would usually do.
Do you have any clear career aspirations at this stage?
I am pretty interested in the medicine path, although I do not have an exact career in mind. Being able to help people is something I definitely want to be involved in.
What advice do you have for students who may not be the most talented athletes but are still looking to be involved in a sports team?
My suggestion is to just go for it; a great team does not just consist of talented athletes. A great team requires much more than just skill; it requires unselfish players who are willing to make sacrifices for the team. Although you may not be the best at something, you will be able to reach your goals if you work hard.