Can We Keep Her? Staunton Stars On Debut Down Under
Mayo ladies football legend Cora Staunton impressed on her Aussie Rules debut this morning, scoring two goals for the Greater Western Sydney Giants in their 50-point pre-season win over the Brisbane Lions this morning.
The four time All-Ireland winner was drafted by the Giants in October ahead of the second season of the women's AFL which will see them go to Melbourne in their opening game on Saturday, February 3rd.
Greater Western Sydney struggled last season and finished bottom of the ladder but they enjoyed a comfortable win today against last year's beaten grand finalists.
Staunton's departure to Australia was delayed due to her club Carnacon's All-Ireland Club success but the 36-year old feels she's adapting well ahead of the start of the campaign.
“Yeah it was very tough, I suppose the five 15-minutes was quite tough. A lot different to maybe what I expected.
“It's probably more physical and I probably wouldn’t be used to that at home. But yeah enjoyed it, there's plenty of things to work on, plenty of mistakes, but yeah I enjoyed it.
“I suppose it was nice to kick a goal or two and set up a few as well. But yeah it’s a good start to the season, a great team performance, we know it’s only a practice game. Round one is less than two weeks away and our focus is on that.”
The AFL season runs until late March which means the forward will miss the entire Ladies National Football League with Mayo and the Giants having jokingly asked to keep her in Australia.
Dear @LadiesFootball,— GWS GIANTS (@GWSGIANTS) January 20, 2018
Thank you so much for @duckie15, she’s a star. Can we keep her?
She’s kicked two for the game and her last - a snap over the shoulder - was class. #NeverSurrender
But new Mayo manager Peter Leahy is hopeful that Staunton will commit for a 23rd Championship season in green and red.
"She's going away for the League but hasn't made a decision yet on her inter-county future. Cora remains vital for us obviously, I won't be putting her under pressure. She'll enjoy a spell as a professional and we'll see where it goes from there."