24/04/2024

For the first time, Melbourne Victory goalkeeper Casey Dumont will play in the AFLW with Hawthorn (Picture: Hawthorn AFLW, Design by Will Cuckson)

For new Hawthorn AFLW recruit and Melbourne Victory goalkeeper Casey Dumont, her cross-coding journey is just beginning.

Seizing a new opportunity brought about by Hawthorn’s head coach Bec Goddard, Dumont is looking forward to her first season in the brown and gold.

She spoke exclusively to The Inner Sanctum about the start to her Australian Rules career and what drew her to the sport.

“I was originally from Sydney so I was brought up with NRL and then grew up in Queensland, so again it was [an] NRL state,” Dumont told The Inner Sanctum.

“I have a few friends that played [Aussie Rules Football] throughout school and I always watched them but I never thought that I would get the opportunity.

“When Bec reached out I was like ‘why not, why not give it a go?’, I can kick the ball, I can catch, all I need now obviously is the execution, the skills and the fitness so I grabbed the opportunity with both hands.”

When considering the move to the AFLW, Dumont confided in some fellow cross-code athletes and friends. A key factor in the move were the experiences of former footballer Bri Davey and former AFLW footballers Jenna McCormick and Ellie Brush.

“I used to play with Bri Davey obviously back when she played soccer,” she said.

“She lived and breathed Aussie Rules, she always spoke about it when she wasn’t talking about soccer, and then I’ve obviously watched her through the years and watched her transition into a major star. It’s what I’m hoping I’m going to look forward to [doing].”

Injured Collingwood midfield star Bri Davey looks on. (Photo: Collingwood AFLW/Twitter)

“[I have] some friends that play at Gold Coast, Brisbane and the Giants [as well as being able to speak to] people like Jenna McCormick and Ellie Brush who have played before,” Dumont explained.

“[They said] that [the clubs] were both professional, they make sure that you are able to have your life as well as keeping that elite level at the club and I can already say Hawthorn has done that.”

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    Dumont described how Hawthorn will manage her during her first pre-season, considering she’s coming off an A-League season earlier this year. She then continues to heap praise on the club and the league for growing women’s sport.

    “I haven’t even started [pre-season] and they are making sure I am getting my education, getting my skills up to date, making sure I am progressing my body to be ready for when pre-season starts [while] giving me time to recover [and] to have my down time and to refresh my mind,” she continued.

    “Everything I’ve heard from other people [and from what] I’ve already seen that at Hawthorn, you can still be a professional athlete but you have that support.

    “[When I was given the opportunity], I was like I’d be stupid if I didn’t take this and try with the club, the professional standard is high so they want to achieve and that’s their goal.

    “It’s one thing that the AFL has done is the fact that the league is growing and growing and obviously I’ve been in the A-League and it took a while to get to that but from what I’ve seen in the AFLW, it’s been from the get-go.”

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