Sykes to the rescue as Canberra United legend comes out of retirement
Canberra United fans will see a familiar face run out in green for the remainder of the Westfield W-League season with club legend Ashleigh Sykes coming out of retirement to lend a hand to her former club.
With Natasha Prior ruled out earlier in the week due to a severe concussion, coach Heather Garriock had merely to turn to her coaching bench to find a solution with Sykes having joined the managerial set-up after hanging up the boots at the conclusion of Season 2017/18.
The 27-year old said that while she wasn’t making a permanent comeback she was excited to pull on the green jersey once again.
“Due to some unfortunate circumstances this opportunity has come about, and I appreciate that Heather has put the faith in me to go out there and do a job,” Sykes said.
“This certainly isn’t a case of me un-retiring, but I am excited to help the team out and get back in front of the Canberra United faithful at McKellar Park.”
Garriock said she hoped the former Julie Dolan Medal winner would be the jolt United needs moving towards the finals.
“Ash has already shown the wealth of experience she possesses through her work on the sidelines this season,” Garriock said.
“Now she can use that leadership and winning mentality on the pitch as we head into the back half of the season.”
In addition to individual honours, Sykes has been involved in some important matches in Canberra’s history, winning two Westfield W-League Championships as well as being named best on ground in the 2014 Grand Final, scoring two goals as Canberra overcame Perth Glory 3-1.
“Her skill and experience will be very valuable for this squad and I know that our Canberra United family will be so excited to see her out on the pitch, and this is a great example of Ash’s selflessness and willingness to put her club first," Garriock added.
Sykes will be available for selection ahead of Canberra's home match against Brisbane Roar on Thursday night.