Club News

Norwood Captain Alison Ferrall Celebrates 50th Game Milestone

Norwood Captain Alison Ferrall will play her 50th SANFLW match this Friday night against Woodville-West Torrens at Coopers Stadium. 

It’s been a long road to 50 games for Ferrall who has sustained several injuries across her football career, from arm fractures to knee reconstructions.

The key defender made her debut in Round 4 2018, against West Adelaide.

“It’s exciting, it’s been a long road but it’s good to finally be here,” Ferrall said.

“I am so grateful and lucky to be part of such a special club and it’s a huge honour to play 50 SANFLW games for Norwood.

“I am proud of the accomplishment and am really excited to run out there with the girls on Friday.

“I have so many amazing memories at this club, from celebrating last year’s SANFL Men’s Premiership, to pulling on the red and blue for the first time.”

Ferrall started her SANFLW journey with Norwood in 2017, and said the competition had come a long way since then.

“It is incredible, the rapid growth with these girls coming through now are amazing – to see how the girls are kicking, marking and moving the ball now is a credit to the competition.

“It is also a credit to those trailblazers (those who played in the first SANFLW seasons) and I am proud to have been one of those players.

“I won’t be getting to the 100-game mark, but when I see the likes of Ashlee Gould and Sophie Armitstead getting to those milestones, it will be something I look back and be proud that I had a small part to play in their careers.

“Then there’s the girls that I am coaching in the Norwood U16s program who may go on to play 100, 200 games in the SANFLW or AFLW and it’s so cool to think that there are girls that can do that.”

Ferrall has memories of kicking the football at recess and lunch at school, and watching her brother play for North Adelaide, but she went down the path of netball.

She eventually had the chance to start her football journey with the Morphettville Park Football Club, before heading to Norwood not long after, in 2017.

“I always loved footy and wanted to be out with the boys playing,” Ferrall said.

“When I got the chance to play I loved it, it was a dream come true.

“I have had so much fun and have played with some incredible players along the way and I am lucky to learn off of them – 12 girls that I played with at Morphy’ Park have gone on to have AFLW careers.

“Steve Symonds offered me a spot on the Norwood list in 2017 and I haven’t looked back since. I remember when he called me I was in America on my honeymoon, I had done my knee, but former Norwood player Leah Cutting encouraged Steve to give me a call and a chance on the Redlegs list.”

Ferrall said her husband, Brad, converted her from a North Adelaide fan into a Norwood fan during the SANFL Premiership run from 2012 to 2014.

“I could get emotional talking about the Norwood Football Club,” she said.

“It means a lot to me, I live and breath this footy club – I love watching the Men’s team go out there and see them do what they do.

“This club has such a rich history, 145 years, that’s not lost on me and it’s a privilege to play for this footy club – I am really lucky.”

She said it was “surreal” playing for the club she supported.

“It is amazing when you are out playing on Norwood Oval, and you think back to when you were standing on the wing supporting the boys 10 or so years ago,” she said.

Ferrall has moved into a Coaching role with the Junior Girls program at Norwood.

“Now in a coaching role with the younger girls, I am really passionate about growing the game further and seeing the next generation of Norwood footballers,” she said.

“The friends I have made, the people that I have met along the way, and the opportunities I have been given have made the person I am now.”

The Redlegs SANFLW side will face Woodville-West Torrens on Friday night, March 17 at Coopers Stadium from 7:30pm. Entry is free.

By Josh Teakle – Norwood FC