The interleague experience is beginning to grow on members of the South Eastern Women’s Football (SEWF) squad as they prepare for the big clash against the Northern Football League on May 19.
The SEWF team will run on to Preston City Oval at high noon, following the under 19s game at 10am and prior to the senior game which features the number three and four ranked teams in the state.
It’s going to be a huge day of football, one not lost on SEWF coach Megan Snart who said her girls are starting to feel the excitement of the build-up to the historic clash between the two leagues.
“A lot of the girls probably didn’t understand too much about the interleague concept but they’re all very excited now after the first training session,“ said the Eastern Devils premiership coach of 2017.
“The calibre of girls we have is just outstanding and really indicative of the standard in South Eastern Women’s Football. It’s great to see so much talent, but it’s going to make it very difficult from a coaching perspective to trim the squad back – it’s not going to be easy.”
A total of 62 players were invited to try out, with the squad to be trimmed back to 25 by game day.
Snart said there was one particular strength in the squad that stood out at the first try out on April 18.
“We have a lot of pace in the team, I think that will be our strength, and some very skilful players who can use the ball beautifully,“ Snart explained.
“But using that pace to full advantage is definitely going to be the key factor that we base our structures around. But really, for me, it’s all about the players learning something new and taking the opportunity to showcase their talents.”
So what does she know about Northern?
“It’s not my style to worry too much about the opposition, if you worry about them too much you tend to lose focus on what your own objectives are,” Snart said.
“I’ve done a little bit of research on Northern but we’ll stick to our own guns and see where that will take us.”
Snart said coaching against one of the pioneers of women’s football, Chyloe Kurdas, made the experience all the more exciting.
“It’s a great honour and a little bit intimidating to be coaching against her to be honest,” she said.
“She has one of the great records, and is respected right throughout women’s football so it’s going to be a real highlight to coach against her on the day.”
The reigning SEWF Coach of the Year said she was getting genuinely excited about the game as it drew closer.
“I’m extremely nervous about the whole thing but it gives me comfort that I am receiving great support from the league and we’re all on the same page about what is important,“ Snart said.
“Rod (Women’s Football Operations Manager Rod Hamilton) has been fantastic, very supportive, and hasn’t put huge expectations on us to win at all costs.
“For all of us it is all about showcasing the girls’ skills and showing the depth of talent we have in our league.”
The SEWF squad will train at Casey Fields on Wednesday the 2nd and 9th of May before the final session takes place, including a jumper presentation, at Frankston Park on Wednesday May 16.
INITIAL SEWF SQUAD
BEACONSFIELD: Sarah Allingham, Shelby Walton, Charlotte Jagusch, Cherie Charles, Jade Hough, Victoria Liarakos.
CHIRNSIDE PARK: Carly Robson, Lauren Howell, Rachel Lohman, Kayla Toomer, Erin Sneath, Chelsea Wilkinson.
CRANBOURNE: Emily Wallace, Parris Stahl, Alicia Heins, Tamara Tomamichel, Laura Robinson, Tahlia Fellows, Brianna Phelps.
ENDEAVOUR HILLS: Laura Jonston, Sarah Beattie, Rebecca Sherry, Bree Peart, Siona Pilkington.
EASTERN DEVILS: Lauren Law, Chloe Hunt, Amelia Pegg, Olivia Aing, Michelle West, Courtney Young, Elley Butcher, Nicole Price.
MORNINGTON: Emily Rylance, Georgia Speedy, Ginger Parker, Vicki Sanford, Liz Muir, Riley Cridland.
PORT MELBOURNE: Maegan Harrison, Paige Holt, Olivia Brown, Belinda Ousley, Mandy Seath, Bronte James.
SEAFORD: Lauren Field, Sarah Astone, Jess Adams, Jess Baguley, Jess Johnston, Lana Bonnet.
ST. KILDA: Mia Amon, Alex Whitehead, Alex Trollip, Laura Savage, Alex Vanderwaal, Grace Vanderwaal.
TRARALGON: Ashley Jans, Tayla Tatterson, Kimberley Cunico, Emily Jolly, Rachel Drennan, Brodi Harris, Lisa Whittaker.