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Michelle Hodge

Age / Birthdate
January 18, 1975
Individual Achievements
3 SWANZ appearances, 0 goals
SWANZ debut v. Germany, May 26, 1998
Auckland rep. 1993, 1997-98   -   7 appearances, 0 goals
Club Record
West Auckland, - 1992
Ellerslie, 1993-94
Eden, 1995-96
University, 1997
Three Kings United, 1998-2000   -   87 appearances, 2 goals
Club Honours
Northern Premier Women's League champions
1998, 1999
Auckland Premier Women's Knockout Shield winners
1998, 2000
Auckland Premier Women's Champion-of-Champions winners
WSANZ Knockout Cup winners
1998, 1999
Representative Team Honours
National Women's Soccer Tournament champions
1993, 1997, 1998

A Personal Appreciation
by Jeremy Ruane

Michelle Hodge has occupied what is arguably the most difficult position in the Three Kings United team in recent seasons, that of goalkeeper.

I say difficult because while her team-mates have been running rings round the opposition more often than not, ‘Hodgey’ has been restricted to the confines of her eighteen yard box, concentrating on the action unfolding in front of her, and preparing for the odd occasions when she has been called into action in these games, in some of which she has touched the ball on less than a handful of occasions in the entire ninety minutes.

As well as needing to maintain her focus for the duration of a match, Michelle has faced the challenge of self-motivation off it, because she hasn’t really had a great deal of competition for the number one jersey at Three Kings during her two spells at the club, save for the early part of the 1998 campaign, when fellow SWANZ international Rachel Howard held the number one jersey.

When called upon, however, Michelle has proven highly reliable in “the sticks”, producing a number of vital stops to frustrate opponents.

A solid shot-stopper who organises her defenders well when required, she first appeared for Eden in 1995, having worn the colours of West Auckland and Ellerslie in prior seasons. After two seasons with the “Gold Chicks”, she played at University during the 1997 campaign, before returning to the fold for the 1998 season, at the end of which she had her first footballing honours, Three Kings having won everything in sight.

The following season, 1999, was unquestionably her finest campaign to date. In eighteen matches, she conceded just four goals, and joined New Zealand goalkeeping legend Leslie King in boasting the best-ever record of least goals conceded in the Northern Premier Women’s League during a season - one, a record unchallenged for twelve years.

In lieu of her lack of involvement in many matches, one of the team’s goals in Premier Women’s Knockout Shield matches against lower-grade opposition has been to score as many goals as possible in the first half, to allow one of the team’s steadying influences the chance to play outfield in the second spell, and present her with the chance to get her name on the scoresheet.

This was the case in the competition record rout of Papatoetoe in 1998, and again the following season against Albany, and ‘Hodgey’ duly obliged with a goal in each game, earning the biggest cheer of the day on each occasion! She wasn’t very happy in the latter match, however, as her second half stand-in, Helen Exler, conceded a goal - Michelle hasn’t played outfield since!!

At representative level, ‘Hodgey’ hasn’t enjoyed as much success as she would have liked. While she has been a National Tournament winner on three occasions, she has yet to enjoy the pleasure of being the first-choice number one for Auckland or New Zealand, such has been the level of competition which Rachel Howard, Stephanie Puckrin and Yvonne Vale have provided during the late 20th - early 21st century.

Stars of the Past