Cork ladies football legend Bríd Stack is switching to Aussie Rules

Cork ladies football legend Bríd Stack is switching to Aussie Rules

Former Cork footballer Bríd Stack is taking a leap of faith by switching to Aussie Rules. Picture: Brendan Moran/SPORTSFILE

ONE of the greatest Cork ladies footballers of all-time is heading Down Under to play Aussie Rules.

Bríd Stack won 11 All-Ireland medals with the Rebels, dominating the inter-county scene at centre-back and full-back, before retiring at the end of 2018.

The native of Rockchapel in North Cork lined out for St Val's in this year's club championship but is now joining AFLW side Greater Western Sydney Giants as an international rookie.

She'll link up with Mayo's Cora Staunton, who she battled numerous times in Rebel red, and Donegal's Yvonne Bonner.

The 34-year-old is married to Carthach Keane, an U21 All-Ireland winner with Cork and a key dual player for Newcestown. They have a son Carthach Óg, who just turned one, and the family will move to Australia together.

Stack explained to The Irish Examiner that should couldn't turn down the chance to play as a pro, having previously been approached by the Giants in 2019.

“The opportunity to play professional football doesn’t come along too often and I know how fortunate I am to get it now, when I couldn’t have expected it at all and when circumstances such as Cárthach’s work allow us to go on the adventure as a family.

“I am a little bit older, I’m probably 10 plus years on some of the girls that are going over but I’m hoping to use my strength and experience as much as possible. I have been training hard for the last while. I’m going to give it an unmerciful crack and we’ll see how it goes.”

Giants head coach Alan McConnell told the club website:

"After three years of interest on our part, it’s really exciting to have Bríd Stack finally make the decision to come to Australia and be part of our list.

“Bríd is a key defender with great speed, good agility, is very competitive and has a long history of having high-level success in women’s football in Ireland.

“This is a recruiting model that we’ve followed with our two other Irish girls and have had great success with Cora and Yvonne in recent years and we hope to get the same outcome with Bríd.

“What an amazing thing for our footy club, that a young woman is willing to not just move herself here to play Aussie Rules but to bring her 12-month old son and her husband, as well, in the current Covid-19 environment."

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