BY ALEX TIGANI
On the eve of the Singleton Roosterettes’ inaugural grand final we recognise that many relatives of our players will be unable to attend the big clash due to current border restrictions.
For Victorian recruits such as Madeline Edsell (Melbourne), Sarah Mousley (Geelong) and Claire Trouin (Gippsland), the Singleton Roosters AFC has almost become a second home away from home while their state of origin remains in lockdown.
Thankfully, we still managed to track down a few significant figures to wish them well from afar!
THE EDSELL SISTERS
Brenna Edsall admits she counted down the years until her sister Madeline was old enough to join her on the basketball and netball court.
Growing up in the Eastern suburbs of Melbourne, the two sisters shared many on court memories with a handful of grand final appearances along the way.
“When she (Madeline) was 18 years old we were finally able to play basketball and netball together which was a memory,” Brenna recalled.
“There were grand finals along the way but many runners up titles so I think she deserves this one on the weekend.”
While they grew up in an AFL dominated state, the duo have only played one match together when representing the Singleton Roosterettes against The Entrance Bateau Bay in 2019.
“That was like the first time I had ever played a game of AFL and I had never done it before,” she continued.
“I rocked up to watch her play and ended up putting on someone else’s jumper; and that was that but I enjoyed it.”
Madeline’s vast improvement this season was recognised through her selection in the AFL Black Diamond Plate Women’s team of the year on Thursday.
When asked for advice for her younger sister, Brenna opted for some graphic motivation.
“There’s a saying our dad says,” she playfully concluded.
“Kill, maim and dismember.”
Across Port Phillip Bay, Johanna Mousley (another one-time Singleton Roosterette) will be cheering on her younger sister from Geelong.
“I wish that the whole family could be up there to cheer Sarah on,” she admitted.
“I promise we will be there in spirit, and if you try and listen hard enough, you might even hear us cheering, all the way from Geelong.”
From Dawn to Dark, the Mousley sisters have spent many afternoons on the football field as umpires.
“I remember Sarah umpiring an AFL with me at the tender age of 13 and confidently giving the crowd the finger when they bad mouthed her,” she recalled.
“She had sass, even back then.
“I also think some of her greatest sporting moments growing up were in the rowing boat, she had amazing skill, determination, and a beautiful ability to motivate others to form a cohesive and successful team, which led her to place fourth in Australia.”
Johanna has advised her younger sister to leave nothing in the tank, go hard and communicate well.
“Remember, you truly are the better team; in spirit and skill,” she added.
“Oh, and remember you can go three minutes without breathing before you pass out, so even if you feel puffed or tired, keep going.”
Prior to Brenna Edsell’s cameo, Johanna would also be able to feature alongside her sister when the Roosterettes played off against Port Stephens.
“Playing with Sez last year was so much fun and so special,” she concluded.
“I was instantly welcomed as part of the team and had an absolute ball.
“I remember before going on the ground, Sez joked that I was too scared to go hard.
“I attempted to prove her wrong and, to date, still suffer a hamstring injury from this attempt….. over one year later.
“My respect for her, and the whole teams’ fitness and skills, definitely soared after this experience.”
THE NEW RECRUIT
Then there is the girl from Victoria’s far East.
Enter Claire Truin.
The club’s first year recruit has transferred her netball skills to the football field with ease and she will have many family members tuning in to the stream from Traralgon.
She will also have plenty of support from her second family at the Lone Pine Army Barracks outside of Singleton.
“From myself and all the team at the Barracks we have a great young leader in Claire,” Lieutenant Colonel James Smith explained.
“I know she will be out there playing hard against the opposition and she will have the full support of the army.”
GRAND FINAL –
Lake Macquarie vs. Singleton
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 17
1.30pm – Bateau Bay Sport Facility