THE future of women’s football in the region has been ignited after the success of two local come and try days over the past fortnight.
Freeling Football Club hosted roughly 30 women and girls from ages nine and above last week, while the same numbers flocked to Willaston Oval on Sunday.
Central District players Bradley Bain, Ben Walton and Izzy McKenzie were also on hand to help out throughout the morning.
SANFL central region football co-ordinator Todd Thorne said he has been thrilled with the response for the events.
“I have been very happy with the turnouts and the enthusiasm from those girls, and ladies, who have attended,” he said.
“The support from the CDFC has been fantastic in providing players to assist at each of the sessions.”
Participant Karen Ryan, who has experience playing for Ingle arm in the South Australian Women’s Football League, originally took up football as a way to bond with her children.
She attended both the Freeling and Willaston come and try days and spoke highly of the action the SANFL has taken to expose
the region to women’s football.
“I haven’t played for a few years, so it’s been good to reboot the skills,” Ryan said.
Fellow come and try participant Lauryn Moss said she thought it was important to take her sons to watch her play.
“It’s good that the boys are watching females play a male-dominated sport,” she said.
Many of the younger participants, who also play other sports, have said they would love to also play footy, including Amber Craig, daughter of South Gawler stalwart Brenton, who also plays netball for the club.
“I thought it would be super hard, but I just got it and now I just always want to play,” she said.
Brenton said he would love his daughter to play football, like him, and has loved the rise of women’s football, taking his
girls to watch the AFLW Crows’ games.
The final female come and try day will be held at Nuriootpa Oval this Sunday from 9-11am and Thorne said he expects more than 40 participants.