HOLBROOK’S Sophie Casey will start life as a Collingwood footballer on Tuesday morning.
Only a few years after locking horns with her brothers Lachlan and Hamish in the family backyard, the 25-year-old will walk the same corridors as some of the biggest names in the game.
Casey is excited rather than daunted by the prospect of starting training at Australia’s biggest club.
“I can’t wait,” Casey said.
“It’s pretty exciting.
“I was absolutely stoked to get picked up by Collingwood even though I went for Hawthorn as a kid.
“I was a little disappointed to miss out in the draft so it was great to go in the free agency.”
Like many girls, Casey’s footballing journey started in Auskick, but instead of giving the sport away as a 13-year-old, she thrived.
The lively forward played for the Riverina Lions in the Canberra league for three years while attending university in Wagga.
Casey then joined the Eastern Devils in the VFL Women’s competition in Melbourne.
“I always kicked the footy in the backyard and once I went to uni in Wagga it got pretty full on,” she said.
“There are so many teams who have popped up in Melbourne, it’s really taken off.
“It’s getting bigger and bigger.”
Adelaide, Brisbane Lions, Carlton, Fremantle, Greater Western Sydney, Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs will also field teams with the AFL Women’s competition.
A season of six matches, followed by finals for the top four, will start in February.
Each club has two marquee players with Bright star Daisy Pearce lining up for Melbourne.
She has won the Helen Lambert Medal (the equivalent of Brownlow Medal) six times.
Collingwood’s women will have 25 players on the list with Magpies women’s football chief Meg Hutchins confident of a successful debut season.
Casey expects to spend most of the season in attack.
“I’ve mainly played up forward,” she said.
“Hopefully I can kick a few this season.
“There are a lot of good players in Melbourne so it’s going to be interesting to see how everyone goes.”