By David Nagel
Hannah Mills has a unique story to tell – just like her 24 teammates that will represent South Eastern Women’s Football (SEWF) against Southern in the 2019 WorkSafe AFL Victoria Community Championships at Moorabbin on Sunday.
The 38-year-old Bass Coast Breaker won’t just carry the number 23 on her back on the weekend, she will carry an appreciative and determined spirit that is spreading through the team like wildfire.
After just two years of playing competitive football in SEWF, and winning a premiership with the Breakers last year, the mother of three was thrilled to earn selection and add a significant achievement to her life-long football journey.
“It feels like a dream really,” said Mills, with a beaming smile on her face, after receiving her playing kit at Casey Fields on Wednesday night.
“Growing up around football, loving football, and just having a footy in my hand my whole life, the opportunity to play for Bass Coast over the last two years has been fantastic.
“Then to have success as a team, and now to get put up in division one and get picked to play in the interleague team – I just can’t believe it, it can’t get any better really.”
Mills hails from Yinnar – ironically an Aboriginal term for ‘Woman’ – and has a family base that is extremely proud of her achievement. Her mum and dad, Jenny and Richard, her husband Tim, and her three children, Archie, Clancy and Paddy, were the first to find out after Hannah received a phone call from SEWF Operations Manager Rod Hamilton.
“When I got selected for the final 30, I’ll be honest, I cried,” she said.
“I rang mum, rang dad, told my husband and kids, it’s massive for our family and I love it. I can’t believe that I’ve got to do this and I’m going to take this to my grave, it’s just awesome. Mum and dad and the whole family have been so supportive and this is great for us all.”
Proud as punch! Hannah Mills and her father Richard share the SEWF Interleague experience at Casey Fields on Wednesday night.
Mills was a little uneasy when first told she would be part of the interleague squad but quickly settled after the first training run.
“To be honest, I wasn’t sure I belonged and was a bit apprehensive about the whole thing,” she said.
“I rocked up and was really nervous, but just the level of skill and the quality of the girls and coaching staff blew me away and I just loved it from the start, it’s been an awesome experience.”
And it’s not over yet, with the big game against Southern something very special to be looking forward to.
“I’m just looking forward to getting around the girls and having fun, and getting my head into the game and having a real crack at the contest,” she said.
“I’m just excited to be playing and being a part of such an elite group of footballers. Some of these girls are going to go places with their football and to be part of their journey, even for a short time, is really special.”
The game between Southern and SEWF will kick off at 12 noon on Sunday, May 19 at RSEA Safety Park, 3 Linton Street Moorabbin – and entry is FREE.
The SEWF Team: