In the first of a new series of articles, we look at the sporting ventures some of our players are involved in outside of football, both past and present.
Our first article features defender, Rachel Mason, who is also an international-capped Australian Rules footballer. we sat down with Rachel to get her take on the sport.
"I’m 22 and live in Heaton Moor, Stockport. I’ve recently graduated in law from university and I am looking at starting a masters in January."
Were you sporty as a child?
"I’ve been sporty for as long as I can remember. I was always opting to play football in the playground and have tried my hand at lots of sports including football, lacrosse and athletics."
What got you into football?
"I have two older brothers that both play football and I grew up watching their matches so it was no surprise to my parents when I decided I wanted to play too."
What got you into Aussie Rules?
"My housemate from uni went on a year abroad to Australia and really got into it, so when she came back the following year she dragged us all down to the boys uni team training. From there we managed to recruit a few more girls to make a team and had regular fixtures with other uni’s and London clubs. It is such an exciting, fast-paced and demanding sport, so I knew I wanted to carry it on as soon as I gave it a go."
Tell us about your achievements in that Australian Rules?
"I was recently selected to play for England in the 2018 Euro Cup held in Cork. We made it to the final but lost to Ireland and came away with a silver medal. I’m also training with the Great Britain team when they meet up throughout the year which is great to learn from the best players in the country. "
Is it tough balancing both sports with working/studying?
"In my final year at university I played for Coventry United and we were training twice a week with matches on Sundays, on top of training with Aussie Rules. Coventry was becoming too much of a commitment to travel over an hour to training and matches whilst trying to balance my final year at university, so I did have to stop playing half way through the season. But at the moment I’m really enjoying a 15 minute drive to training!"
Is there anyone you look up to?
At secondary school I had a PE teacher that really inspired me to be the best I could be in anything I did and I still remember that today. But at the moment I’d have to say my mum because she does so much for so many people and is generally just an amazing woman.
And, finally where do you see yourself in five years?
I’d like to be a fully qualified solicitor and settled in a job I’m happy in. I’d also love to have been selected for the 2020 AFL International Cup in Australia with the GB team.
Note: Manchester Mosquitoes are running a taster session at Burnage Rugby Club on Sunday 3 November, 11:00-13:00.