Cariss-Brett adapts to class rise

REALISING the class rise between community football and the Coates Talent League, Oakleigh Chargers winger Amy Cariss-Brett feels more prepared in 2023. The top-age talent was earmarked as one to watch over the preseason by the coaching staff and has built into the season nicely with her best game coming just before the month-long community break.

In a match where Cariss-Brett’s Chargers ran out 85-0 winners over Calder Cannons at Warrawee Park, the top-ager was a prime mover, racking up 28 disposals, seven marks and seven inside 50s, setting up numerous attacking displays and earning a place in the Team of the Week.

Cariss-Brett said at the Coates Talent League Preseason Testing Day that she was “very eager” to get the season started after a big off-season.

“It’s been a long time since I last played so I’m quite keen to get into it,” Cariss-Brett said. “We’ve had a good preseason, a lot fitter nad stronger this year so looking forward to a really, really good season.”

Playing six games during the regular season last year, the 18-year-old said she had adapted to her wing role ahead of the season, and had learnt so much about the quality difference when competing in the best underage competition in the country.

“It was definitely good to do it (play last year),” Cariss-Brett said. “Being bottom-age last year I learnt a lot about myself as a player and also how other girls play, what I need to change different from community level to Coates League so it’s a great experience.”

Unsurprisingly, Carris-Brett rates her running and kicking as some of her strengths, key attributes of a winger, while looking to improve on her ground balls and tackling. In season 2023 thus far, Cariss-Brett is averaging 16.3 disposals, 2.8 marks, 3.5 inside 50s and 1.3 tackles.

Still ironing out some consistency – with two 20-plus disposal games and two games with 11 touches or less, the hard-running midfielder said she looks up to Monique Conti as a Richmond supporter, and former Charger Mimi Hill. The latter has worked closely with her Coates Talent League club, with Cariss-Brett highlighting the close bond between the Chargers players.

“I would say all my teammates are really good, they help me out a lot and we push each other and we play for each other,” Cariss-Brett said. “It’s really good I love playing for them, it makes the game so much better.”

Though Cariss-Brett is a Tigers supporters and does not have ties interstate like other players, the Oakleigh top-ager picked a surprise destination to nominate for if given the chance, but did admit she would be happy to go anywhere.

“I’d love to go to Western Australia, Freo or West Coast,” Cariss-Brett said. “I love that place, that area, it would be nice to get out of Victoria, but I’d go anywhere that would take me.”

Oakleigh Chargers will have another week off next weekend before taking on Northern Knights at Preston City Oval from 1:30pm on Saturday, May 27.

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