Such is Damon White's love for hockey that the 11-year-old is only too happy to trek from Exeter to St Leonards six days a week.
Inspired to play by watching his father on the pitch six years ago, the Tamar Churinga talent mixes under-14, 16, 19 and division two commitments with regular trainings at the Northern Tasmanian Hockey Centre.
He loves it all, but feels most at home playing four years above his age.
"It'd have to be the under-16 team because it's not slow, it's not too fast," he said of his preferred level.
"It's a good speed for me right now, but the other ones are good for getting me ready for when I go to them for a better pace of game."
ELSEWHERE IN SPORT
A grade six student at Exeter Primary School, Damon is Northern Tasmania's sole representative at the School Sport Australia under-12 hockey championships in Bendigo.
The trip marks his first state cap and will see him play six games in five days from August 19-23.
"What I've heard is New South Wales and Queensland put up a good competition," the flexible midfielder said.
"They have lots of people try out and they've got quite strong people and I reckon the other teams will be quite strong - it'll be very fun.
"It [Tasmania's under-12s] is a pretty good team - I tried out last year but I didn't get in so I thought I'd try again.
"I think I've improved quite a lot with my skills - some of my basic skills as well as some of the more advanced ones."
Mum Ally said Damon's state selection had been an exciting reward for relentless dedication to improving his game.
"He absolutely loves his hockey, he lives and breathes hockey so that's why we're out here as often as we are," she said.
"He always chooses to do the extra trainings and extra development squads they put on because he's really committed to the sport.
"Both his Dad and I are really proud of him making the state team and Bendigo - it's a real testament to how much effort he's put into training and the persistence he's shown."
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