Sophie Broadhead selected for Australia Womens 27s in Touch Football World Cup

In April, Yass High School teacher Sophie Broadhead will jet off to Malaysia, where she will play for the Australian 27s team at the Touch Football World Cup.

This is Broadhead's third time in Australian colours for touch football, and yet she was still pleasantly surprised to receive the call-up.

Passing the ball: Sophie Broadhead has plenty of experience under her belt, but playing in Malaysia is an exciting new challenge for the Goulburn local. Photo: Supplied.

Passing the ball: Sophie Broadhead has plenty of experience under her belt, but playing in Malaysia is an exciting new challenge for the Goulburn local. Photo: Supplied.

Having represented Australia at the Under 18 and Under 20 age groups, injuries and work commitments meant that Broadhead could not pursue her touch football aspirations for several years.

"It's nice to be back in playing the league touch again," Broadhead said.

Despite her time away from representative touch, Broadhead is still close friends with many other women in the team, which will make her return much easier than it otherwise might be.

There are other advantages that Broadhead can now use, as she has spent much of the past few years coaching both Goulburn and Yass sides at local and representative levels.

"I've actually coached about seven teams from around this area in the last 12 months," Broadhead said.

"Coaching's been more full-on than the playing at the moment, so that's kept me busy."

Broadhead classifies herself as an instinctive player by nature, and said her vast coaching experience had helped her become more considered in her play on the field.

"Coaching's definitely helped my game a lot," she said.

"I'm a pretty instinctive player because of my speed and stuff ... I've never really thought about what I'm doing on the field, but now I coach, it makes me think more about what I'm doing on the field as well."

To prepare for the tournament, Broadhead and the rest of the team will attend three training camps in Brisbane in the weeks leading up.

In the meantime, Broadhead will keep fit through her solo training regime, which she said involves a lot of cardio and speedwork sessions, which are integral in a relentlessly busy sport such as touch football. 

"I also play a fair bit, so that match fitness keeps me busy as well," she said. 

Broadhead has travelled overseas for touch football before. However, she is excited to play in Malaysia as it will be a "completely different" experience.

"It'll be nice. I've played in New Zealand and played a Trans-Tasman in Australia, but to go all the way to Malaysia is pretty exciting," she said.

The 2019 Touch Football World Cup will take place in Malaysia from April 28 to May 4. This is the first time the tournament will be held in South East Asia, and it will feature seven divisions. 

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