CASEY Sherriff was recruited from the Casey Demons and she’s about to make her debut at Casey Fields.
You can’t make this stuff up.
The 21-year-old is a versatile midfielder who was recruited as a rookie in 2019, and after failing to play a game last season, she has finally earned her chance.
And while Sherriff wasn’t expecting the news, she was given plenty of notice from coach Mick Stinear ahead of Saturday’s clash with North Melbourne.
“We were about to go out and do a drill with just the mids on Tuesday and he said I was playing,” she told Melbourne Media.
“There’s a few injuries but I was still pretty nervous going into selection.”
Sherriff is more than ready to make the jump to AFLW level after proving herself in Melbourne’s practice match against the Pies, but she admits the butterflies won’t go away until the first ball is bounced.
“I’m very nervous – I’ve been thinking about it all day,” she said.
“I think once I get out there I’ll be fine, but just leading up to it I’ll be a bit nervous.”
Sherriff had little football experience before entering the AFLW system, playing just five games for Gippsland Power in under 16’s and one season in the VFLW.
But the quiet character has pushed herself to the limits to put her hand up for a spot in 2020.
“I feel like I’ve worked really hard over the pre-season to get my fitness up and stuff like that, so I think I’ll be ready to go,” she said.
“I was struggling to keep up a bit last year.
“It was the first time I’d been in a super elite program and I was way behind everyone else, but I feel more comfortable going into this year.”
The former basketballer’s journey hasn’t always been easy, admitting there were times she considered stepping away from footy all together.
“At the start of the VFL season I really thought about it,” Sherriff said.
“I was struggling with form and I didn’t think I deserved to be here.
“But I had a couple of people help me get … back on track, and towards the end of the season I started to get more confident which helped going into this pre-season.”
And sticking by her footy career is certainly paying dividends now, with the chance to take to the big stage this weekend.
“It is very exciting,” Sherriff said.
“All my family are coming down to watch, a lot of friends have told me they’re going to come down to, so it’s pretty cool.”
Sherriff will be playing her first AFLW game alongside Gabby Colvin and Sinead Goldrick, with Saturday’s Round 1 match kicking off at 3:10pm.