The journey of teen indoor soccer player Tarly Brindley has shocked even those closest to her.
Fondly remembered as a six-year-old who once stood in the corner of the pitch during an outdoor soccer match, Tarly has completed a remarkable turnaround that now includes her becoming a national representative.
The Shailer Park High School student has earned selection in the Australian youth futsal team, which will travel to the United Kingdom and Spain in November and December.
“In her first few years, she was hopeless, she would stand still and want nothing to do with the ball,” Tarly’s mother, Pam, said.
“One year it just seemed to click. It would have been about under-10s or 11s and she started playing futsal — I knew when she started playing futsal as well that she was more serious about it.
“Even when she would just go and stand there, she always looked forward to soccer on Saturday mornings.”
Tarly said it was a dream for her to represent her country.
“It’s nerve-racking but amazing (to think about the upcoming tour),” the 15-year-old said. “It’s a bunch of emotions rolled into one.
“I can vaguely remember standing in the corner and not doing much.
“There wasn’t a particular moment where I decided to take it seriously and get involved. I just grew into it.”
A quick, creative player who lines up on the side of a diamond formation in futsal, Tarly said she could not contain her emotions when she found out about her selection.
“We got an email saying that I had been picked. Mum called me over and told me and I just thought, ‘Holy c**p, I’ve made it,’ ” the Daisy Hill resident said.