AS MELBOURNE Vixens goaler Tegan Philip prepares for Sunday’s Super Netball grand final, the influence of her successful career on today’s generation of young hopefuls along the coastline she calls home is not lost on her.
Philip grew up in Anglesea and played much of her juniors at the club before moving into the Geelong Football League at St Joseph’s, then rising through the ranks to play in the Victorian Netball League.
Philip said she was proud to forge a career via a non-traditional Netball Victoria pathway – she did not make a Victorian representative team until she was 20 – and hoped it provided reassurance that anyone along the coast could make it to the top level.
“It’s pretty cool to come from a little seaside town like Anglesea; there’s plenty of kids growing up there and they can now see there are things possible if they put their minds to it and work hard.
“I am proud that I’ve come from Anglesea and I’ve had a different pathway that isn’t the pathway that Netball Victoria put in place.
“I was the girl that came out of nowhere … I had a quick escalation to get to where I am, it’s a pretty cool story and one that I’m proud of.
“Hopefully it encourages others as well.”
Sunday’s grand final against West Coast Fever will also be Philip’s last game. Philip said she was nervous but also excited for the challenge in what could be a fairytale finish to her 11-year Vixens career.
Philip will not be the only local talent in the Super Netball grand final. Teammates Allie Smith and Emily Mannix have ties to Leopold and Drysdale, respectively, while West Coast Fever’s Alice Teague-Neeld hails from Ocean Grove.