“There was a lot of people telling me I can’t be good at two things” – Monique Conti proves the doubters wrong

Image courtesy of Monique Conti's Official Instagram.

At just 18 years old, Monique Conti, was a Premiership player for the AFLW Western Bulldogs side in March 2018 and was a part of the WNBL Melbourne Boomers Grand Finals Series team in January 2018. 

It hasn’t always been an easy ride for the young dual sport athlete juggling both basketball and football but having the right people in her corner has only pushed her to be able to be where she is today. 

“Yeah it has been really hard but I think I’ve just learnt to adapt to it, I’ve been doing it all my life but now both are just at an elite level. It all started a long time ago, to go from one to the other constantly for all my life.”

“I think just being able to juggle both and then going through a stage where there was a lot of people telling me that I can’t be good at two things at a high level. That was really hard and really the only support I had was my family at that stage so that was a bit of a challenge.”

“I’m used to it now but hopefully by me doing that at this level it inspires younger girls and boys to be able to try and if they do love both sports to try and continue it as far as they can,” Conti said. 

Before getting into her list of achievements, a very down to earth Conti didn’t know that this is where she would be by 18 years old.

“It sort of just come at once, things just kept adding on top of each other but I mean I can’t complain. It’s been surprising but it’s just part of the journey I guess. It is a pretty good feeling knowing that I’m only 18 and there’s so much more I can do in my sport life,” she said. 

Thinking back on her career in both sports, Conti has some clear moments that have stood out to her. 

“With basketball, it would have to be winning a gold medal at the Championships in 2016 for the under 17s for the Australian Sapphires. That was probably a really big highlight for me. Also obviously, Rookie of the Year for the WNBL in my first season and then playing in the WNBL Championship Series with the Boomers that was a massive highlight.”

“And footy, obviously would be getting drafted and then winning a Premiership as well with the Bulldogs,” Conti said. 

Basketball Career:

FIBA U17 World Team, Gold Medal team – 2016
U17 Australian Representative – 2016
WNBL Rookie of the Year – 2017

Football Career:

AFL Womens Academy – 2017
Overall draft pick 4 – 2017
AFLW Premiership – 2018
AFLW Grand Final Best on Ground – 2018
Runner Up AFLW Rising Star – 2018
Western Bulldogs Best Young Player – 2018

In such a short time, Conti has showed much of Australia just how talented she is but also how humbled she is to be recognised for such awards. 

“It is an honour to be acknowledged individually of course and for my first AFLW season I didn’t expect it so it’s a pretty good feeling. But like I said you’ve been acknowledged for your individual achievements which is pretty cool but then again you go out there and play your footy and win a premiership with them,” she said.

On top of playing in the WNBL and the AFLW competitions, Conti is also beginning her studies with Deakin University after completing year 12 in 2017  studying Business. Conti knows that her future is in sport but is driven enough to continue studying to have that option after sport.

“It’s just something to sort of have in my pocket for the future post sport life. I do want to do sport forever basically but we all know that’s impossible, I just want to have that degree there to fall back on something afterwards.”

With Deakin University allowing Conti to be a part of the Elite Athlete program and study part time with them it allows her to keep pursuing her sporting dreams and wants other people with the same goals to know it can be done. 

“You’ve got to know what your priorities are whether you want to pursue a career in sport and fall back on your studies in the future or pursue something like getting a job somewhere, just knowing that there is a lot of people out there that will support you wanting to try and do it. So it is possible,” Conti said. 

With AFLW 2018 season done and dusted, keep up to date with all things Monique Conti on her Instagram & Twitter pages. A true Australian sporting star who we will be seeing on our screens for many years to come. 


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