In today’s Age in the Good Weekend, there is an article about a women’s team representing Australia in this year’s Rio Olympics in the sport of rugby. When I first arrived in Australia, I loved soccer (football) and played it in England. I was better than my brothers, you can ask them, they will agree, so when I arrived here, I thought that I would be able to continue to play football. Then I saw footy and fell in love with the sport, but I could only be a spectator, not a participant. There were no other real options for me other than the typical female team sports such as netball, hockey or if I wanted, a solo sport, tennis. I actually played netball, but it was not really the sport for me. That was then, now, it’s different and girls around the country have the opportunity to participate in a sport that they not only love to watch, but to play.
Whether that sport be football, rugby, cricket, basketball and now AFL clubs are not only encouraging but taking part in formatting a women’s AFL league and teams, Carlton amongst them. Girls can now not only look at playing in a sport they love, but can in some instances represent their country in a sport that was previously dominated by men. It is all about women being able to play a sport that they have the ability and determination to play in because they can, not because it has been deemed out of their reach because of their sex. It is not about showing men that they are capable or better than them in a sport, it is about them being given the opportunity to play in that sport.
I for one am thrilled and also sad. Thrilled because as we have seen in women’s hockey, football and cricket, Australia is becoming a dominant force in these sports’ and now footy, and I am saddened because I would have loved to have been able to participate in footy as a female. As I was such a tomboy, with two brothers, was a quick, agile football player, I would have smashed it on the footy field.
#BOUND BY BLUE