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First home game a ‘moment I’ll never forget’: Atkins

Megan West - Curtin University   February 15, 2018 1:29 PM

Ashlee Atkins embraces Alex Williams after Freo's round two AFLW win at Optus Stadium.

Ashlee Atkins embraces Alex Williams after Freo's round two AFLW win at Optus Stadium.

New recruit Ashlee Atkins will never forget the moment she first ran out on to Optus Stadium in front of thousands of Fremantle Dockers fans.

“It was unreal, it was incredible,” she said.

“Running out in your home stadium with 42,000 people there cheering Freo on, it was an amazing feeling.”

Growing up Atkins said she always loved to play sport with her brother and neighbours.

“We would play everything from tennis to footy, we always kicked in the front yard or on the road with the boys next door,” she said.

“I never really thought about playing [footy], I just loved mucking around with the boys in the front yard and actually being a part of the game.”

Atkins said she joined in her first game of footy when she was nine years old.

“I was just hanging around on the sidelines and one of the coaches came over and asked me if I’d like to join in,” she said

“I had a crack and since then I loved it and ran home to dad and begged to play footy. 

The introduction of the NAB AFLW competition has provided female role models for young girls with dreams to play in the big league.

To see all the amazing stories that we have, it’s unreal and it’s so great to be a part of,” Atkins said.

“Anyone can watch footy now and know they can do that, it’s really amazing to have that out there.”