AFL SportsReady Trainee Marking Her Mark In Women’s Football

AFL SportsReady Trainee Marking Her Mark In Women’s Football

AFL SportsReady Trainee Marking Her Mark In Women’s Football

It’s been an exciting year for women’s football, after the announcement of an 8-team National Women’s Competition set to commence in 2017. AFL SportsReady trainee Ellyse Gamble is hoping to be there on the field when it kicks off.

‘The competition is such a big thing for women’s sport and women’s football. To see it take off is amazing,’ said Gamble. ‘Young girls now have a pathway. They have something they can reach for and aspire to,’ she continued. ‘A goal of mine is to reach the highest level I can, so I’m really hoping to be drafted.’

Playing as a key forward and ruckman, the 18 year old recently got a taste of playing on the big stage, with the Western Bulldogs at Etihad Stadium.

‘It was such a surreal feeling,’ said Gamble. ‘I had to remind myself that I was part of the game’.

Gamble has again been named as part of the Bulldogs squad to take on the Melbourne Demons later this year, a match she hopes will boost her chances of being drafted. ‘To be in the elite environment, it’s got me excited to try and make a career out of it.’

Growing up in the north of Tasmania playing for her local team, the Burnie Dockers, Gamble never thought football would provide her with the opportunities it has. A premiership player at the Dockers, the future star was named Captain of the Tasmanian team for the Women’s Youth Championship earlier this year.

‘Football was always something that was just a bit of fun, I never imagined I would have got this far with it,’ she said. ‘It was a proud achievement captaining my state. I enjoyed the extra responsibility and it gave me confidence to be a leader’

That leadership experience has also helped her jump head first into an AFL SportsReady traineeship. Studying a Certificate III in Sport and Recreation at Hellyer College in Burnie, Gamble has been involved in projects across the school. ‘I’m always busy doing practical work. I’ve spent time running outdoor recreation classes, planning sport activities and going on camps,’ she explained. ‘It helps when you’re studying a qualification and doing something you enjoy.’

The traineeship is proving to be beneficial for the young gun to find a path to explore her interest in sport.

‘When I left high school I didn’t know what pathway I wanted to go down, but the value of the work experience from my traineeship has been second to none,’ she said.

‘I know that working in the sport and recreation industry is exactly what I want and it’s made me realise what I love’. 

As for which team she hopes to be drafted to, Gamble doesn’t mind much at all. ‘Well, Dad is a Carlton supporter so he would love me to go there, but I’d be happy to play with any team,’ she laughed.

DATE: 08 August, 2016
AUTHOR: Liam Oakey
IMAGE: Credited to Phil Barnes