Players to Watch in 2016 – Tilly Lucas-Rodd


They say things that are red go faster. That’s definitely the case with Sharks’ youngster Tilly Lucas-Rodd who believes speed is one of her biggest assets.

Tilly has made increasing her speed a real focus this pre-season. “I really want to use my pace this season. I want to be a running utility. Getting fitter and stronger has really been my focus over summer,” she explains.

“I used to take people on and use my pace when I played Youth Girls, but I think in my first year of senior footy, I took that out of my game. I was a bit intimidated and lost my confidence, so I really want to get that back because it’s one of my strongest assets.”

19-year-old Tilly is in her second year at the Sharks and was recently picked to be a member of AFL Victoria’s Women’s Academy, made up of over 100 of the best players across the state.

“I was stoked to be selected. It was such an honour, but at the same time I was a nervous because I’m one of the youngest there.  When you’re younger you hear names like Daisy Pearce and Steph Chiocci and they’re these illusive figures that you never get to meet or know personally. Now I’m training with them and everyone is on an even playing field.”

As part of the Academy program, Tilly and the other Academy players have been training at least five times a week since November.

“Being part of the Academy has made me take ownership of my own training. The strength and some of the conditioning training is done on your own. I can feel the difference and it’s increasing my confidence.”

Tilly thinks that the Sharks State League team can take it further this year and win a premiership, but that it very much depends on the attitudes of all the players on the team.

“One thing we do have at the Sharks is we have a really good family environment and we all really care for one another. If we have the belief and the common goal to win a premiership, I really think we can get there.”

Phoebe McWilliams