The evolution of women’s football into a celebrated part of the sporting culture has also delivered Celine Moody, a ruckwoman, the chance to clash with her 23-year-old twin sister Breann, who plays for Carlton, over the centre bounce.
Similarly sports-loving Breann put horseriding and show jumping “on the backburner” for football after she started playing in secondary school at St Margaret’s in Belgrave. Though she did not grow up with an eye to a high-level football career, “the physicality, the competition and the contest” dragged her in.
The twins’ mother, Sarah, says that while she wouldn’t consider herself a “footy mum” per se – with her husband often busy training racehorses, she has driven her three daughters to everything from basketball to soccer and netball – she loves the fact AFLW is allowing women onto a traditionally male arena.
“I grew up working in a male-dominated industry and I’ve always thought girls can do anything and should never back down because they feel it’s not somewhere they belong,” says Moody. She gets to as many of her daughters’ games as she can around her own showjumping competition.
“It’s wonderful for women to be able to be seen on the big stage with the blokes as far as football goes … I totally support that girls can do anything and should have the right to do anything if they choose it and are willing to work hard.”
She takes pride in seeing her daughters mentoring younger girls, but says her football-parent highlight so far has been watching them face off in the middle (an event for which friends have equipped her with a custom made football jumper split between the two teams).
“The clash game I saw was so special,” she says. “To see them going up against one another in the ruck, it was amazing.”