Maddy Collier was just 21 years old when she was made history as the first player to be selected for the GWS Giants AFL Women's team. Almost one year later, after an amazing season in the inaugural AFLW competition, Maddy is adjusting to the realities of being a footy player in a televised, national league.
“It’s weird because people are like, ‘I watched your games’. It feels weird to be on that level now, like semi-celebrity. Especially because we’re still like that around the boys,” she told Women’s Health. “Obviously it’s quite new to me and I’ve never experienced anything like it, but I really looked forward to the challenge of playing high-level footy.”
We sat down and spoke to her about everything from the inside of her gym bag to the sportswoman she looks up to most.
What do you love about AFL?
What I love most is that it’s very hard to find a sport that’s like it. It’s great because you can bring in other things from basketball, netball or soccer and they all can contribute to it. But in terms of skills and the actual game, nothing compares. It’s a 360 game, it keeps you really fit and it’s challenging, so it ticks a lot of boxes for me. I think one of the great things about AFL that I found as well is the friendships that I made along the way.
Do you do any work outside of playing?
I don’t, because I kind of work in the sport. I work in reception at the Giants, and my other job is in the AFL so I go to schools and run clinics. It’s kind of like that – once you get in it’s hard to get out.
What do you put in your smoothie?
I mix it up a bit, but I usually do a couple of frozen mixed berries, mango, spinach… and there’s this powder stuff, I don’t know what it’s called, a green powder… chuck that in, almond milk, Greek yoghurt, cinnamon, banana, that’s probably about it. I chuck a lot into smoothies because it all just blends together.
What’s in your gym bag? A change of clothes, fresh socks, lots of hair ties, a drink bottle always, sometimes a pen and paper if I need to write down something, a towel and Birkenstocks to wear after. And just a snack. There are these Blue Dinosaur paleo bars, they’re so good – I’m not paleo, they’re just yum.
Your dream holiday? I’ve never been overseas so I don’t know… but I love the beach. I’d live on the beach if I could. I went to Byron for Splendour, that was sick, so probably Byron because of the beach.
Favourite TV show? Suits.
Favourite workout song? Fake Magic by Peking Duk and AlunaGeorge.
Who do you admire? I reckon Serena Williams is pretty boss, just the way she stands up to the media is pretty cool. And she’s pregnant and still killing it, she’s just top of her game.
Something people don’t know about you? I’m good at remembering song lyrics. I never really do karaoke but we’ll be listening to songs and all the time someone comments, “How do you know all the words?” And I’m like, I dunno, it’s just a thing I do.