Jetsetter Smith Aiming to Keep Place in Town Team
Tuesday, 4th Dec 2012 06:01
Tommy Smith’s international travels with his adopted New Zealand will not resume until March and he means to put the time to the best possible use.
His globetrotting may have become second nature to the Ipswich defender but he is forced to admit: “It’s not the most ideal situation in the world but it can’t be avoided unfortunately and to be fair I’m not going to turn down the opportunity of representing my country.”
Smith’s most recent experience with the All Whites saw him head for China and a 1-1 friendly draw, then upon his return he was left out of the Town side for the 6-0 defeat at Leicester.
He added: “The gaffer spoke to me and said he didn’t feel I would be 100 per cent for the Leicester game, which was understandable. I don’t think anyone would be. But representing my country is a big thing for me and I will continue to do that.
“The China trip did come at a bad time but thankfully I got myself back in the team and hopefully I can keep hold of that place.
“Obviously it’s not ideal but that international window was a bit different with it being a midweek one. That made it tougher. With the two-week break it’s a bit easier because I can get back in the country earlier, which gives me more time to recover.
“But with no international commitments with New Zealand until March I will be trying to cement my place in the Town side.”
Macclesfield-born Smith was eight when he emigrated with his parents but within six years he was making regular trips back to the UK.
He explained: “I was 14 when I joined the Ipswich Academy then I left New Zealand, where I spent most of my school years, to sign my scholarship when I was 16.
“I love representing my country and I would never turn it down unless there was a valid reason.”
The travelling back and forth on international duty has provided Smith with a bonus in the shape of thousands of Air Miles.
He laughed: “I will be able to have a decent holiday on the Air Miles. By the end of the season I think there should be enough for my girlfriend and I to go somewhere quite exotic.”
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