Jodie Kenny's baby steps to Games return
Jodie Kenny knows a thing or two about timing.
Four years ago, her last-ditch shot found the back of the net with 15 seconds on the clock to force a penalty shootout in the final of the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
The Hockeyroos eventually won a nailbiter over England and Kenny went on to become the Hockeyroos' best drag-flicker for the next two years before hanging up her stick after Rio.
She had long harboured a desire to start a family but had every intention of wearing gold again at the home Games on the Coast - and planned accordingly.
"I was called both ways so I thought, 'Why can't I do both?'" Kenny tells AAP.
I always knew it was going to be a huge challenge; there are not too many people in hockey that have played with a little bub so I'm paving the way for other people if they'd like to do it as well."
She remembers the moment she shared her ambitions with her mum.
"I thought I was a bit crazy. I told my mum I'm going to try and have a baby after the Olympics and get back for Comm Games but it all kind of fell into place," she says.
"I don't want to say it was an easy pregnancy but it all went really smoothly."
She took plenty of inspiration from Australian netball captain Laura Geitz - who will also be on the Gold Coast - even though the pair have never met.
"I guess that's the benefit of social media, seeing her do it with her little son Barney and how she wanted to play in these Games as well," Kenny says.
Kenny insists her battles were more physical than mental, recalling how she had to start from square one and struggle with the banality of walking on a treadmill.
Related: Turning netball dreams into diamonds with Laura Geitz
Before she knew it she was picked for the Hockeyroos recent series against China and Spain in what was her first competitive outing since Rio - and was among the goalscorers.
"I've scored a couple since being back but not flicking at the level I was previously," she says.
"But I want to get back into that goal-scoring rhythm. It'd be nice and what a place to do it than in front of your home crowd."
Gold Coast, though, isn't her final stop. The Wamuran product has eyes on helping Australia avenge their 2014 World Cup loss to Netherlands on the global stage later this year.
And possibly, she will even be there for Tokyo.
"World Cup, absolutely I want to be there and there's still a few years for Tokyo," she says.
"I'd love to get myself to another Olympic Games but that'll be very much how my body's holding up. I'm turning 31 this year so my age is getting on. I just want to enjoy this year."
Support Kenny and the Australian women's team as they play in Pool B against New Zealand, Scotland, Canada and Ghana. Snap up your tickets today.