RICHMOND star Monique Conti made plenty of history last night, becoming the first Tiger to win the AFLW Best and Fairest and become the highest voted winner of the award in the process.
However, humble as ever, she said with a laugh that “it doesn’t sound true”.
“It’s pretty cool. I never thought I’d be in this position, especially this season, so yeah it’s really cool and I’m really happy to hear about it,” she said.
Coming into the night, she did not think she was going to win, and as such had not planned a speech or anything.
“I was just saying before I didn’t even plan anything,” Conti said. “I thought I was just going to dress up, have a good night with the girls on the table but as soon as the votes started happening I was like ok this is really interesting. Came to Round 8 or 9 and I was like oh damn, probably should prepare something. So no, didn’t expect it, but I think that’s what makes it much more exciting.”
Conti also clarified an iconic moment from last night’s broadcast which saw her captain Katie Brennan caught staring at her teammate.
“I think she was just having a proud mum moment,” she said. “She was I think just looking at me and being really proud of me which I love. We love Katie.”
Having achieved so much in her young career already, the question remains as to what Conti wants to achieve in the rest of her career.
“I sort of set goals before every season, and I don’t like to think too far ahead because I think if you try and plan too much nothing goes to plan,” Conti said. “I like to challenge myself, I’ve got good people around me that like to challenge me as well, I like to surround myself with people like that.
“I think next year I’ll just set some new goals and see if I can achieve them, but I’m really focused on obviously coming into a good footy season and trying to win some more games and hopefully we can make finals and that sort of stuff.”
Now that the AFLW season is done it is time to shift focus for Conti, with the WNBL season with the Melbourne Boomers now her prime focus.
She said that having the two elite careers at the same time was a good de-stresser for her.
“It’s a good way to switch off having my basketball there, and vice versa you’re right. To be able to not make my whole life consumed with sport but be able to switch off when I can as well, completely away from both of them, so I think I have a pretty good balance at that but it keeps me sane.”
However, she admitted she was not sure about her future juggling both.
“It’s tough to know what I’m going to do next year because we have to wait for the fixtures to come out so I can see where the seasons align, but I’m not going to think too far ahead and I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it.”
She is hopeful of playing some minutes for the Boomers on Sunday against the Perth Lynx, but is not 100 per cent sure yet.
“Hope so! I’ve got to get a solid week of training first. I’m actually missing basketball to do this, so sorry Chris!” [Lucas, head coach of the Boomers]