Emily Eaves - Pride and Power
'Give it all you got, don’t hold back and you will have an absolute ball. Train hard and have fun with all your friends!'
There are several ways that one can judge a players connection to their club, from what they say to how they act—but there is one very easy way to tell how much pride they have in donning their club colours, and that is simply by how long they have been doing it for.
Emily Eaves has been proudly displaying the Southern Power’s colours for the entirety of her football journey thus far, which is six years to be exact—and during which time she has certainly found her fair share of success.
‘It has been an awesome experience especially for us girls. When I started at Power we only had one youth girls’ team which most weekends we struggled to get enough people on the field to even play.
‘The club has grown so much since then that last year we were able to have four youth girls teams in which three won the Premiership which was so incredible to be a part of and this year we are able to have three women’s team which is so amazing to see.
‘Everyone at the club are the best people to be around and I would not want to be anywhere else.’
But the footy field, or in fact anything on grass for that matter, is far from where she has spent most of her sporting life. This is because 2020 marks Emily’s fourteenth year of doing surf lifesaving, making her an all-year round sportswoman as she loves doing surf lifesaving ‘Through the summer and then footy in the winter’.
But because of the time-constraints that come with juggling two very different sports and being so invested in both—she ‘Never really got the opportunity growing up to trial for teams or academies’ for football.
As for how Emily ended up exchanging the sand during summer to the turf during winter, she puts it down to someone very close to her.
‘My dad definitely was definitely one of the reasons I started playing footy. He was from Tassie, so he played a lot of footy growing up.
‘He coached my brothers team and getting dragged along to all their games every weekend, by the end of it I was so sick of watching them and wanted to try myself so me and a couple of friends started playing.
‘I have been so lucky to have dad’s experience with footy while I have been playing, he has taught me so much.’
This extra guidance offered by her father may also help explain why Emily has made such an impact rather quickly—with her accolades over the years including but not limited to; making the NSW U15 School Girls State Team, finishing runner-up to the 2016 Sydney AFL U18 Div. 2 Best and Fairest, and winning the 2018 Sydney AFL U18 Div. 1 Best and Fairest.
But arguably the best and most remarkable of her accolades thus far, is the fact that she not only played in the 2016, 2018, 2019 Premiership sides, but she was also named as the Best on Ground in all three.
And the Grand Finals also sit as her favourite footballing moments thus far, as ‘They are just so special, and you work so hard all year for it and there is no better feeling then achieving that with the whole team’.
But even with all of this success, this year also marked a new chapter for Emily as it became her first-full season in the Women’s Premier Division.
‘I played a couple of games with girls last season, but this year has been unreal so far. It is a pretty new team with a lot of new players from all over and quite a few of us being fairly young.
‘We got a new coach this season and he has really created a good team culture amongst us girls this year. Definitely the level of footy compared to youth girls in regard to the skill level, speed of the game and the intensity is a completely different level but I love it, it has helped me improve the way I play a lot.
‘The older girls in our team have been so amazing to us young girls and are such role models for us. They go out of their way all the time to help us young ones out and are people we look up to. We have all done so well so far so hopefully we can keep it going into finals footy.’
It is rather easy to see what drives Emily, and what has motivated her to stick with the Power and gain a considerable number of accolades over the previous years—and that is simply her love for the game.
This is easily seen through her favourite thing about the game, which ‘Would definitely be the team environment around footy’.
‘You don’t want to let the girls down because they are your mates so making sure your always ready to give it 100% whenever the ball is around which is something I love about footy.’
This high level of passion is also why Emily has not forgotten about those who have helped her throughout her reasonably new but also promising football career. With thanks going to ‘Definitely my Dad as his always given me the best tips all the time and has helped me out with heaps of my skills’.
‘And Kathryn Hull she coached me for five years and was so amazing and dedicated and now I’m lucky enough to play alongside her.’
So, what is next for this proud Power player?
‘For me probably just to keep playing and enjoying footy. Improve my fitness and my skills so hopefully I continue to improve the way I play on game day.’
As the Southern Power continue to push higher up the ladder—and look to go deep into this year’s final series, we are certain that Emily Eaves will continue to be a very proud and also talented player at the very forefront of their success.
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None of these photographs are owned by MWM; all images have been supplied by the player and have been personally shot.