Aussie game will bring challenges, admits Rowe

John Morley

Mayo and Former DCU star Sarah Rowe says the AFL tackle and reading the game will be the biggest challenges when she joins Collingwood women’s AFL team at the start of November.

“The tackling and the physicality will definitely be the biggest challenge along with game understanding.”, said Rowe.

“With football (LGFA), all that is kind of instinctive so getting a sense of the game will definitely take some time.”, she said.

Rowe will join fellow Mayo forward Cora Staunton down under this season as she looks to help Collingwood qualify for the Aussie showpiece next spring.

She will join a Collingwood side which registered just three wins out of seven last season, making the Mayo sharp shooter a timely signing.

Rowe had ambitions of playing AFL last season but wished to finish her degree in DCU before going professional.

“Education is so important. I was obviously finishing off my degree in DCU last year and I had a bit of a shoulder injury.”, said Rowe.

“Now that I’m finished my degree and injury free it just seemed like the perfect opportunity. I said no last year but going professional was something I really wanted to do, even in soccer a few years back.”, she said.

The AFL season gives Rowe the chance to play professionally and not miss out on any championship action with Mayo but Rowe is not pleased to miss the League.

“I don’t like missing out on the League with Mayo. The way the season goes I should be back towards the semi-final stage of the League but it’s definitely something I’m not happy about.”, said Rowe.

“Mayo is my priority. All of my friends are there, and the girls mean everything to me.”, she said.

Rowe heads over to Australia on the 2nd of November to get immersed straight into AFL but will touch base with Mayo over the Christmas base.

Rowe will have a week-long camp on her own with the Collingwood coaches to get her used to the game before joining the rest of her new teammates.

“I’ve been doing a bit of kicking in my spare time (with the oval ball). I did a bit in May as well when I was over there, but it will really all be starting when I get over there.”, said Rowe.

“The skills side won’t be that difficult though. Its mainly the tacking that will be challenging.”, she said.

John Morley

Image Credit: Oliver McVeigh / Sportsfile.