Jason Haldane is seeing his Olympic dreams come true as he prepares to hit the volleyball courts for the England national team.
The former Terrace resident has made a life-long career out of a sport he used to play in the Caledonia school gym – having played all over the world and represented Canada on the men’s national team for 12 years and more than 350 games.
“It’s a dream come true,” he said of becoming an Olympic athlete.
In the past, Haldane had tried to qualify with the Canadian national team but after three failed attempts with the team Haldane thought his shot at the Olympics was over.
However, that all changed when he was asked to play on the British national team. As the host team for the Summer Olympics this year in London, Team England already has its Olympic berth.
Haldane’s father is British, and he has played professional volleyball in Europe for the past 17 years and Haldane uses his British passport while playing overseas.
Team England is currently training outside of Sheffield and Haldane said the team is focused as it trains twice a day.
“It’s really surreal because we are so close to it,” he said of the magnitude of preparing for the prestigious event.
As he approaches, his 41st birthday Haldane has decided that this will be his last major event before he retires.
“I thought it would be the best way to finish a career,” he explained. The next step for the player will be coaching, something he has already dipped into, even hosting a volleyball clinic in Terrace last summer.
“I really enjoyed it, I would like to do more camps in Terrace in the future,” Haldane said. “I still have a love of the sport and I would like to hopefully pass that along.”
Haldane said throughout his years of globe trotting, Canada has remained his number one country.
“Coming home is always great,” he said.