Georgia Garnett - the East Coast Product
After countless training sessions and game days, we are finally here.
After months of build up; we are finally on the eve of the AFLW draft.
Every player has had their own special journey which has led them to here … but there is something that stands out about East Coast product Georgia Garnett and her journey.
For starters, her journey has not been without success; as Georgia has represented the NSW/ACT Rams U18s on three occasions (2017, 2018 and 2019), the most recent of which she was the captain of the side.
But she did a little more than just represent the Rams; as she finished “joint MVP for NSW/ACT Rams with Brenna in round 1 of the National Championships”.
She doesn’t stop there either as she also made the "15s NSW Bluebirds All schools team” and the 2018 and 2019 Eastern Allies where she was “co-captain with Mia King from Tasmania”.
“And I was lucky enough this year to be a part of the U18s women’s AFLW National Academy
and was invited to the combine.”
But this success isn’t what the humble product plays football for; in fact, for her it is more of an added bonus of playing the sport she loves;
“What I love most is definitely the culture footy brings I have made some of my best mates and lifelong friends.”
“Back at club level, we have such a great bond between the guys and girls is incredible, at state level even though we only see each other a couple times a year we still keep in contact and it’s always great when we get to play together.”
“Even the Giants girls I got to train with them every Saturday through their preseason and just the way they looked after me as a 17-year-old and I have made some great mates at the giants.”
“I think one of the biggest things I love though is the opportunities footy has given me to meet people, test myself about how much I want to achieve my goal of playing AFLW, to represent myself, family and club.”
And considering what we have already mentioned; her career hasn’t been short of opportunities.
And of course, these opportunities have led to some cherished memories;
“Well this year for Rams we had a fairly different team from previous years and we bonded pretty much instantly and were a tight group who we all still keep in contact with each other, but I absolutely loved playing alongside Tarni Evans, Jayde Hamilton, Sophie Phillips and Zoe Hurrell who I’ve been playing footy with for quite a few years now and would call her a best mate so always love playing with Zoe.”
“Also training through the winter with the Giants VFL team and having the opportunity to play a game at Punt Road oval against Richmond, the girls at GWS are all so lovely and just a bunch of legends being the youngest one there they took my under their wing in a way and had a great experience training with them.”
Arguably, one of the best aspects of Georgia is her ability to not only excel at football but also enjoy every moment.
And considering how busy sporting life can be; remembering why you chose to play is very important.
And nothing shows your enjoyment of the game more than seeing the bright side of a loss.
“This year up at nationals on the Gold Coast, although we didn’t win a game our team was one of the best I’ve ever played with, we had so much fun regardless of our scores; we bonded so well and were all really close even though we had only met each other a couple times.”
All of this goes to show that she values her teammates more than the final outcome which we can all agree is an outstanding sign of leadership.
And this theme is also shown in some of her other favourite memories;
“Definitely the National Academy camps, it was a real professional vibe about them but again the girls were awesome, being 1 of 3 from NSW I had to make some new friends and all the girls just got around and we had a heap of fun.”
So, with a promising and also success career to her name already … what does she think about it all?
“I’m just extremely grateful of the opportunities I’ve been given over the last couple years.”
And in todays sporting world … sometimes gratitude can be hard to find. But for Georgia this love of the game was there from the start;
“I did little A’s for the social side my dad used to be a national runner so he was always keen on running I used to play touch Oztag soccer and netball before footy so they were always my main interest any ball and team sport I just loved playing and then footy came along and I just fell in love with it.”
However, with three years of football already under her belt; she has the potential to take her career to the top level.
More recently, Georgia was involved with the AFLW Draft Combine;
“It was such a great experience, a bit nerve wracking to begin with but it was good to be rewarded with some good results in the tests after a bit of a tough conditioning period after Nationals. It was also really great to catch up with the girls from the National Academy they are such a great bunch and to be 1 of 3 representing NSW made me extremely proud.”
But considering her high level of appreciation and gratitude and the fact that she is knocking on the AFLW’s door, there are a lot of people that she is thankful for helping her but some in particular are;
“My parents my dad is an athletics coach so before I got AFL training, he was always giving me running and gym to do to help me, my mum she’s been to EVERY sporting thing I have participated in she’s definitely my biggest fan.”
“My club coach for backing me in for everything I do and always being there.”
“John Vlatko forwards coach at Giants and also one of our club legends at East Coast, he’s helped me train always motivated me and couldn’t have improved without him this year.”
“Brad Tudman my PE teacher for helping me get through year 12 with footy and anyone who has given me an opportunity to play footy at any level I’ve been at.”
“I know I have become a better person because of these people on and off the field so I am really great full for all of them.”
Which everything she has already achieved; the next step is pretty obvious;
“In terms of AFL, to make a list would be unreal but the ultimate goal would be to play.”
However, quite respectfully;
“I think away from footy though I would love to be able to work with disadvantaged kids doing sport.”
“I got the idea because originally, I was settled on PE teaching and I’m not really sure I just thought about how much more rewarding it would be to put a smile on kids’ faces who don’t get the same opportunities in sport as I do.”
And this also goes to show that her gratitude and appreciation doesn’t stop when she steps off the footy field.
But at the end of day; these qualities along with her leadership and skills means it will only be a matter of time until we see Georgia fulfil her dreams of playing at the top level.
Which is exactly where she belongs.
Images - AFL Photos