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Wednesday, February 19 2020 @ 02:00 am ACDT

AFLW 4.0 Player Previews: Sarah Hosking

Australia

Today's AFLW 4.0 feature is on Carlton women's player Sarah Hosking. 

As a kid, Hosking thought she would play elite netball and did not dream to play football, as there was not really any pathway until 2016 when it was announced there would be a Women's football league.

Image Source: Getty Images AsiaPac

“I can remember both Jess and I were invited to the draft and it was at the NAB centre and I think it was sort of the expected top 50 players or girls that were definitely going to be drafted," she said.

“Leading in, I had a few chats with a couple of the clubs but had my eyes set on Carlton.

“Jess and I turned up with some of our family members, Mum was interstate and then I remember when my name got called out at pick 19, I was ecstatic, so I looked towards Dad and Mum on the phone.

“Typical Mum thing holding the phone right up to her face and nose.

“Dad was stoked gave me a hug and we were all sitting on the edge of our seats for the next half an hour to an hour just waiting to Jess’ name to be hopefully be called and hopefully called out to Carlton and when that happened we both had a sigh of relief.

“The excitement could not be explained, it’s one of those numb feelings that we were going to take a path not knowing what to expect.

“It’s sort of has shaped our lives and created a future and pathways for us now.”

Hosking started playing Aussie Rules with twin sister Jess out in Seaford.

“Started when we were in high school, one of our high schools’ teachers showed us a box of old woollen guernseys and we had a look at them and said what is this,” Hosking said.

“It was football and limited teams.

“She said she won’t buy new jumpers until she knows it’s sustainable and enough girls to buy new jumpers, so I think for our first season it was a four-round season, we wore those old woollen jumpers that were from back in the 1970s.

“That was sort of our first taste of football.”

The Hosking’s first season was at Seaford Tigers in the VFLW competition in 2016.

Hosking said the only reason why they started to play football was because they went to a NAB Talent search where they were suggested to find a VFLW club that was best suitable for them.

And lucky for the Hosking’s they were drafted by the end of the year.

The changes in the AFLW over the last few years has been more the development of the competition as its really exciting.

“You look at the different pathways or come from different sports or backgrounds and a very rare few girls who have played all the way through,” Hosking said.

“I think in the years coming and a few of the girls, now have played in the Auskick and started playing since they were young girls.

“(And) I think the talent coming through, the standard of playing has definitely improved, and I think it’s going to continue to increase as the years go on.”

Irish teammate Joanne Doonan has fitted into the team culture at the Blues well.

“For the first few weeks we were trying to understand her accent, but again that’s the beauty of the AFLW Competition at the moment,” Hosking said.

“Jo’s amazing, I think her talents being able to kick left and right foot, coming from a sport like Gaelic football I think she is going to fit right in amongst the girls in the playing groups.

“I have no doubt she will fit in seamlessly and again I love what the Irish girls bring and again it’s shows another element to the game and excitement that they bring.”

Hosking’s most challenging AFLW opponent was Emma Kearney early on. Also, she played against Bri Davey in the VFLW.

“I tried to tackle her, and I would behave like a monkey and she would just carry me along,” Hosking said.

“And I have always said she is one of the toughest players in my opinion and best in the competition and it will be interesting coming up against her this year.”

The players Blues fans should watch out for in AFLW 4.0 include Abbie McKay and Lucy McEvoy.

“McKay is going to go to another level and I’m excited to see her go to another level,” Hosking said.

“She is a very smart player and often everything she does seems effortless!

“Looking forward to seeing Lucy McEvoy, our highest draft pick (and) she has such a big body for such a young girl.

“It will be very exciting to see get out there and especially has skills on left and right similar to the likes of what Maddie Prespakis did.”

Hosking cannot wait to get out on the footy field in 2020.

“Just getting back out there and long off season that involves our VFL program,” she said.

“Without a doubt it’s just getting back out there to play the intensity and level that is AFLW.

Especially, Hosking believes a season highlight in 2020 will hopefully be against Richmond in the club’s season opener at Ikon Park.

“They’re a new team and it aligns with the men’s program and hope we can continue that rivalry,” she said.

“As much as it’s a Richmond home game, it’s here at our home in Ikon Park for Carlton and we will have just about the same amount of supporters there than we would have at any other home game.”

Image Source: Getty Images AsiaPac

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