Making her senior international debut against the Czech Republic in 1998, few could have envisaged what the teenager from Perth would go on and achieve in the colours of her country. Fay would captain Scotland at the UEFA Women's EURO 2017 finals in the Netherlands, playing her 200th senior international match in the final warm-up friendly before the tournament against the Republic of Ireland.
“I had a wee tear in my eye thinking about the games that had gone before and everyone that's been there to help me,” said Fay to BBC Scotland after the match. “I took myself away before the game and got myself together. I'm glad it's done now and we can focus on the Euros.” However, three games later the tournament, and Fay's international career, was over. Defeats against England and Portugal had made it a difficult first finals, but the tournament would end for Scotland with a 1-0 victory over Spain, with Fay captaining the side to victory and keeping a clean-sheet in the process.
“I felt the time was right to call it a day and that my journey was complete after playing in the Euros this summer,” Fay told the Scottish FA website. “Captaining my country for the best part of a decade has meant everything. I have given everything I can for my country and, as the team moves into a new era with a new head coach, it's time to pass the baton to the next generation. This is such an exciting time for women's football in Scotland and I look forward to watching this team flourish.”
Fay spent the majority of her club career in Scotland, representing Aberdeen, Ayr United, Celtic, Glasgow City in addition to two spells at Hibernian. She also played in England for Brighton & Hove Albion and Leeds United, before ending her club career in Iceland with Stjarnan. Following her retirement, Fay has taken her elite sports knowledge to the Scottish Rugby Union, becoming head of the women's and girl's game in her country.
“When I was a child, if you had told me I would play for my country once I would have been delighted so to have done so on 203 occasions is incredible,” she added. “It is hard to describe how much it has meant to me to play for my country. It has helped shape me into the person I have wanted to be.”