Making SANFL history, Naomi Maidment has become the first ever women to coach in an SANFL side.
by Daniel Hill | WAFC
Naomi Maidment is no stranger to the West Adelaide Football Club or the male-dominated game of Aussie Rules Football for that matter.
Joining the West Adelaide Family in 2012 when the Edwardstown Women’s side became the West Adelaide Women’s Football Club in the South Australian Women’s Football League (SAWFL), Naomi has shown that football isn’t just a game for the boys, dedicating her time over the years as Head Coach of Women’s League, Under 18s and Under 16s sides as well as an Assistant Coach.
Monday Naomi further broke outdated views whilst making SANFL history, becoming what we believe to be the first ever women to coach in an SANFL side, after being added to the West Adelaide Football Club’s Centre of Excellence Under 16 Coaching Team alongside Head Coach Jason Fairall and Assistant Coach Dale Woodhart.
“There’s definitely a difference between coaching male and female players” Naomi responded, after being asked about any issues that she may face.
“Earning the respect of the players, and their parents, in what has typically been seen as a male dominated sport is probably going to be my biggest challenge.
“But I am very confident in my abilities and I wouldn’t put myself in a position that I couldn’t handle.
“I honestly feel I have a lot to add to the development of this playing group and am excited at this new challenge”.
West Adelaide Football Club aims to be an inclusive club, supporting all of the playing groups including and is proud to be a part of breaking down gender barriers in sport.
Proud of her achievements, Football Manager Andrew Marks had only good things to say about Naomi and is looking forward to seeing what she brings to the team in 2015.
“She has a strong understanding of the modern game and is extremely knowledgeable on football” Andrew Marks said answered to why she is the best person for the job.
“Running the Women’s Football side since the beginning, she is a great organiser, a brilliant coach, and she knows how to run a training.
“And we have picked who we believe are the best candidates for these roles. Her gender doesn’t come into it.”
Naomi’s time with the Club has seen her gaining volumes of knowledge from previous West Adelaide Coach Andrew Collins, as well as Andrew Marks.
“I’ve learnt a lot from both Marksy & Collo over the years” Naomi explained.
“It was the both of them that pushed us to bring the Women’s team over to West Adelaide originally
“They have both taught me the management of people is just as important as the development of the player”
“And the Club itself encourages a good, supportive culture, which is like a big family”.
Keeping her position as Head Coach of the Women’s side in 2015 Naomi is looking to have a busy Football Season, with a month crossover of the Centre of Excellence Under 16s and the SAWFL seasons.
A great ambassador for Women in football, we can’t wait to see what Naomi achieves in Season 2015.