AN athlete who survived a horrific showjumping accident as a teenager is to compete for Scotland after switching to hockey. Katie Robertson was selected to compete for Great Britain in a European showjumping competition, when a fall while competing at a show in Wales knocked her unconscious for 10 minutes.

Robertson had to be removed from the arena on a spinal board, having broken her shoulder and collarbone, and rushed to hospital.

She was aged just 14 at the time and never regained the confidence to ride competitively so instead turned her attention to hockey, which brought positive results.

Loading article content

Robertson progressed through the school ranks as a teenager, and made the Scotland Under-18 team aged 16. She is now competing at full international level.

The 20-year-old student, who is studying for a BSc in sport and psychology at Abertay University, refused to let the 2010 fall from her horse, Atlantic Swift, put her off pursuing a career in sport.

Robertson said: “I did ride a couple of times after [the accident] but I didn’t have the confidence to really go for it.

“I took up hockey because I wanted something to fill up my time and it has just gone on from there.”

She added: “We are training just now for World League 3 in Brussels in June and if we reach the quarter-final stages then we qualify for the World Cup in London next year.

“It is such an honour to play for your country and I have a tear in my eye every time I pull on the jersey and the national anthem is playing.”

The third-year student from Freuchie, Fife, is on an elite athlete development programme at university and is completing her course part-time to allow her more training time for both club and country.

After graduating, the Grove Menzieshill player, who trains at Dundee International Sports Complex, hopes to stay in sport both as a competitor and a coach.

She said: “The support I have had at Abertay University has been incredible and it is fantastic to be surrounded by so many talented staff and students.”