Colac Imperials’ female football program commenced in 2017, with the intention of giving Colac and district girls the opportunity to play a sport many had grown up loving, but never playing.
The club fielded two sides in the inaugural AFL Barwon Girls’ Football competition, in the under-15 and under-19 divisions.
While it was all very exciting, it was far from smooth sailing in the early days. Both sides struggled for numbers a little early on, with girls coming into the rooms and picking up a pair of donated boots from some of the club’s junior boys on the morning of the first game.
Despite being comprehensively beaten for the opening rounds, you would have been hard-pressed to find a frown on the young lady’s face in a Colac Imperial jumper. As the season wore on, the girls in the blue and pink started clinching wins. The team song started to get louder and louder.
And in true fairytale fashion, the girls who’d never played football, who’d been 100-point losers at the beginning of the year, brought the competition’s inaugural premiership cup back to Western Oval.
The program has done nothing but grow since.
In 2018 the club fielded a senior side in the inaugural AFL Barwon senior women’s competition, as well as two junior sides. Each side was competitive, all players improved and most importantly, more girls got involved in Australia’s favourite sport. All three sides competed in AFL Barwon’s 2019 competitions.
We’ve had girls represent our club in interleague fixtures; feature in the Geelong Falcons’ NAB League program; represent Victoria in National Championships; and reach the highest possible level, AFLW. Perhaps most importantly, we’ve provided a welcoming, fun environment for girls who have never played team sport. We’ve brought mums back to competitive sport. We’ve helped girls get out of the backyard with their brother and onto a field, where they belong.
In 2021 the club again has one senior and two junior sides. Our under-15s are coached by Andrew Mallon. Craig Hardingham coaches our under-18s. Our seniors are led by Tim Hassett.
All enquiries are welcome.