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What’s your favourite colour RockTape and why?

Pink because it’s so bright and makes me feel colourful.

What items are always in your bag, and that you never travel without?

Ribbons! I always have to make sure I have my ribbons to wear in my hair when competing.

You’ve done some other sports on your journey to becoming an AFL player – tell us a little about your sporting journey and what led you to AFL.

I have been a competitive surf life saver for the past 5 years. I compete in the beach sprints and flags where I have competed at state, national and international level. My speed definitely helps with my AFL and is a main asset to my game.

I was drawn to AFL after watching my brothers and dad play for many years. I started when I got into high school and from there joined my local club.

There was a small hiccup with your selection in the draft – what happened?

Due to an injured marquee player in the Fremantle women’s team, Freo were given 19 draft picks instead of 18. On the day of the draft the 19th pick was not recognised. This meant my name would not get called out. However, while watching the draft I received a phone call from the Fremantle Dockers coach to tell me what had happened and she informed me I was on the list!

2017 will be the first season for the women’s AFL league. What does it mean to you to be a part of the sport from its beginning? What vision do you and the AFL have for growing the sport in the future?

I am very honoured to be a part of the inaugural season and very excited to take part in it. It has been such an overwhelming experience so far and I can’t wait to see what the year holds.

Incorporating programs into schools will get women involved in the sport and grow the game even more. Allowing equal opportunity for women in sport is very important.

What differences between the men’s and women’s AFL games should people look out for?

The women’s team will only have 16 players on the field where as the men’s team have 18. The women will also use a smaller sized football.

What goals do you have for your first season, and for your AFL career?

Play my best football and develop my game further. And to make the grand final!

What’s one lesson you’ve gained through sport, that applies to your whole life?

Quitting isn’t an option.

What’s the best advice a coach or mentor has given you?

Hard work outweighs natural talent.

How do you want to be seen by young athletes?

As a passionate athlete who shows leadership qualities.

What advice would you give to young girls who love kicking the footy around in the backyard? Now there is a women’s AFL league what is the pathway for them to achieving the goal of playing professionally?

Keep persisting because there is now a pathway you can take. Train hard and with passion and you’ll get there. Girls should join their local youth girls team and start playing. From here they can represent their state and be chosen in development programs to achieve the ultimate goal of playing in the Women’s AFL.

What else are you up to off the field? Other sports, studying, career, hobbies…?

I am currently studying a bachelor of Primary Teaching at Edith Cowan University

Where can people learn more about you and follow your journey?

Instagram: Tarnigolisano
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tarnica.golisano
Twitter: @TarniGolisano

Interview conducted by Christie Jenkins
Facebook: www.facebook.com/christiejenkins
Instagram: christie.jenkins
Website: www.christiejenkins.com.au