Gabrielle’s Olympics Debut
Harrington Park’s Gabrielle Plain has just returned home from Japan, after making her Olympic debut for the Aussie Spirit Women’s Softball Team at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
22-year-old Gabrielle was part of the Aussie Spirit Women’s Softball Team that finished their Olympic campaign in 5th place with a 1-4 win/loss record.
“It was an incredible experience that I didn’t believe I would ever have the opportunity to partake in when Softball was removed from the Olympics in the past. The journey, the destination, the energy, all of the aspects, I am just so ecstatic that I had this experience, and I will remember it for a lifetime” said Gabrielle to the Oran Park Gazette.
Gabrielle and her teammates competed against Japan, gold medal defending champions, in the first event of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Despite spectators being unable to attend the games, millions of Australians were cheering on the Aussie Spirit from their lounge rooms around the world.
“It was both like and unlike any tournament that I have ever competed in. The teams we played were teams that we had come head-to-head with before in World Championships, Japan Cups and other international tournaments held throughout the years. At the Olympics, however, it’s not just your sport and countries that play it. It’s all countries and sports coming together to showcase their abilities and compete at the highest level, all the while, cheering on other athletes from your country in sports that you may not have had a lot of interaction within the past” reflected Gabrielle.
She explained that it was hard to choose just one highlight of her Olympic experience, “I don’t think there was ever a specific moment that I could pinpoint as a highlight. The entire experience was a highlight, with highs and lows all coming together. Being able to wear the green and gold, meeting other athletes who I had watched on TV and never dreamed of meeting, competing both on and off the diamond, cheering on my teammates, there really is no single moment”.
For now, Gabrielle will enjoy time at home before returning to the US.
“After a short break at home, I’ll be heading back to the USA to graduate and compete in my last year at the University of Washington” she said.
“Thank you so much to my family, friends, teammates and coaches who have supported me at every turn and helped me to achieve so many goals. They have helped me in so many ways, from hours of training to emotional support, to keeping me loving the game at every step of the way” Gabrielle finished.