Mullumbimby girl Kiri Dale has shown such prowess at soccer that she will be touring the UK with the National U19 Football School Sport Australia team in January 2015.
The U19 team will be playing ten matches over 22 days in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland. These matches include six international fixtures plus selected club/academy games endorsed by Football Federation Australia.
Kiri, 17, attended Main Arm Upper Primary and Mullumbimby High School and is currently in a Sports Excellence Program for years 11 and 12. She started playing soccer as a 4-year-old and has been hooked ever since.
She has previously played for Mullumbimby Brunswick Valley Football Club in the boys’ squad and last year in the young men’s summer league.
Kiri was part of the Football Far North Coast development squad and played for Northern NSW at the U14 and U15 (captain) nationals. Since then she has played for Palm Beach in the Open Women’s team coached by Gary French.
‘In November 2013 I was part of an Australian select U18 team that travelled to the Surf Cup in San Diego,’ says Kiri, ‘which has opened up options for possible US college scholarships where I could have the opportunity to play football at a really high level and continue my studies.
‘This year has been particularly hard, with Yr 12 study, training daily and travel for tournaments. My family and I have been clocking up an average of 2,000km per week. I have worn through a lot of car tyres and a lot of soccer boots!’
Kiri still needs help to cover the costs of her UK tour and her grandmother has helped put up a crowd-funding site at igg.me/at/help-Kiri-pls-url. A raffle has also been put together thanks to the support of the local community and Mullumbimby businesses.