Ahead of last weekend’s Pride Round, the Ainslie Tricolours were gearing up for what they think is an important step towards diversity and inclusion in Australia’s sporting codes.
The Tricolours are not strangers to backing the plight of Pride Round, having been involved in it last year heading up against Eastlake Demons. Last weekend they faced the Demons again in their inaugural matches and we caught up with First Grade Co-Captain’s Josh Maynard (men’s) and Maddison Holloway (women’s) to get their insight into what it means to wear the guernsey in support of the initiative.
“Participating in a pride round can be a meaningful way for us as a footy club to demonstrate our support. We’re stoked for this round to serve as a platform to send a positive message and encourage acceptance within the sporting community,” said Josh.
On the women’s side, Maddison sees the round as a way for them to demonstrate to the wider community the factors they hold paramount as a club.
“Pride round in Ainslie colours is about showing the broader community about what our football club champions every single day we come to train and play: support, diversity, and inclusion. In the women’s program, we have established a culture which welcomes all and supports them once they are here, and I think that has been absolutely paramount to getting the best out of each other on the field,” said Maddison.
Josh sees the outlook for the weekend through eyes of enthusiasm and eagerness with a ready team by his side.
“Our whole squad is super excited to get back to games this weekend after the bye. We have a bunch of guys who will be coming back from injury this week and that has the whole group up and about,” said Josh.
For Maddison, she prepared for the tough game with grit and determination for victory on the field.
“Eastlake are a super tough competitor and each time we play them it’s a really physical contest. I think for our girls it is about winning the contested footy and capitalising on our chances when we can. If we can do this for four quarters, I think we set ourselves up well to come away with the final result,” said Maddison.
For anyone wanting to know how they can get behind Pride Round, Josh and Maddison both said the ‘best way it to come to the game’.
“Bring your families, bring your friends, and come and witness first-hand how putting inclusion and diversity at the forefront of sport creates environments for people to live comfortably in their own skin and enjoy themselves,” said Maddison.
We hope all of our graded and community divisions played their best in the games last weekend and are proud to see them represent exceptional social inclusion through participation in an annual Pride Round right here in the Capital. Check out the draw for future games at AFL Canberra here