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'It was fantastic' | How Cora Staunton helped Brid Stack with AFLW move

Thom Malone
Thom Malone

18:24 5 Jan 2021

Ahead of her AFLW debut, former Cork star Brid Stack joined Off The Ball on Tuesday where she spoke about settling in Australia.

Changing country and sport is a daunting challenge at the best of times. In the midst of a global pandemic, it meant a Christmas in quarantine with a baby, locked down in a hotel room for Brid Stack.

Luckily, she had a familiar face to lend a helping hand. New clubmate Cora Staunton made some introductions to help Stack settle in.

"Cora introduced me to five or six of the girls straight away. We all hung out for a couple of days.

"That was fantastic to meet them before being introduced to the rest of the squad, so it was a bit less daunting when I met the whole team.

"She made it really really easy for me to settle into the club. She is very much respected here and I just hope I can do myself justice."

Stack confessed to being a little uneasy in the early training sessions with the GWS Giants.

"Definitely nervous," admitted the former Cork star.

"I tried to make sure my concentration level was high. I didn't want to mess up in any drill.

"The way it's set up is very systematic here so there are a lot of meetings before the actual training sessions.

"There is a meeting beforehand to have a run through all of the drills in the session, so I just made sure I really concentrated when they were explaining all of the drills.

"Then I could position myself correctly during the drills. The girls have been absolutely wonderful so welcoming to me and so encouraging.

"Even if I did find myself out of position in the drills, they would just tell me where I needed to be.

"I am really willing to learn, it is a different game to football but a lot of the principles are the same. It's just getting used to the terminology and the positioning, and the tackling are the biggest things.

Brid Stack - AFLW transition

Being stuck in a hotel room for two weeks in quarantine allowed Stack find the best ways to study her adopted game.

"We watched an awful lot of AFLW and AFL matches. There's a channel here Fox Footy and we're watching that every single night.

"There are plenty of golden oldies on there at the moment so we are watching all of them.

"We are just trying to keep the communication high as well. The head coach, Alan McConnell is absolutely brilliant.

"When I was in quarantine he went through a lot of the positioning and terminology just trying to get me up to speed ahead of my first session, so that was very helpful.

"I will play absolutely anywhere so I don't mind where he puts me but he is looking to put me in the back line so hopefully it won't be too much of a transition form what I would be used to.

"Hopefully I'll be able to use my strength, use my height and speed to just spoil and bring the ball out as much as possible.

"It is a case of just go with the flow at the moment and just take in as much as possible.

"Then try not to be paralysed by trying to stay in the correct position the whole time and you have to try play with a bit of flair.

"It's not too dissimilar in the back line whereas in the forwards it's maybe a different kettle of fish for girls from Ireland to come into a forward position, but in the backs it's hopefully not too much of a jump."


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Afl Bríd Stack Cork GAA Cork LGFA GAA Lgfa

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