Growing up in Australia’s hockey heartland, Western Australia, it was inevitable that Jacquie Pereira would play an integral part in two Olympic gold medal performances. In Seoul 1988, Australia won its first Olympic hockey gold medal, indicating the start of an astonishing era of success for women’s hockey in Australia. At the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, the Australian women’s hockey team achieved something that no other women’s hockey team in the world had done, it won a second Olympic gold medal. Pereira also competed at the 1992 Barcelona Games, where the team finished fifth.
Pereira was first selected for the Australian senior team in 1986 for the Esanda 6 Nations Tournament in Sydney. That same year she played in her first of three World Cups in Amsterdam, where the team finished sixth. Four years later, the Cup was held in Sydney where Australia lost to the Netherlands in the final. Out to prove a point in 1994 in Dublin, Australia finally won the World Cup by beating Argentina.
She was an integral part of the victorious Australian women’s hockey team that retained its world number one ranking by taking out the Champions Trophy in Argentina in 1995 by defeating Korea 1-1 (4-3 in the penalty shootout). The win was historic, making Australia the first nation to win the Champions Trophy three times and also in consecutive events; in 1991 Australia beat Germany (in Berlin), and in 1993 Australia beat the Netherlands (in Amsterdam) 1-1 (4-2 in the penalty shootout).
In her 144th Test, Pereira reached a personal historic milestone when she scored her 100th international goal – the first Australian female to do so. This made her the greatest goal scorer in the world in the post-war era as a player who scored all her goals from the field (ie. not from converting penalty corners or penalty strokes).
Aside from her appearances for her country, Jackie represented Western Australia from 1984 until her retirement in 1997. She captained the side in 1993 and was vice-captain in 1990, 1991, 1992, 1995, 1996, and 1997.
Following her performance at the 1996 Olympics, Pereira retired from international competition, and at the end of the 1997 Telstra season, retired from playing hockey at a national level.
In 1989 Pereira was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for her service to hockey.