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Nick Shipley

Nick Shipley became the first graduate of the GIANTS Academy in Western Sydney to join the club when he was selected in the 2017 NAB AFL Draft. Hailing from Campbelltown, Nick Shipley is a tall, strong midfielder and a contested ball-winner in the game of AFL. This is his story.

Mum was born in Lima, the capital city of Peru and she lived there until she was 14 then she migrated to Australia with most of her family including her uncles and cousins. I grew up in Campbelltown with my parents and my sisters.

When it comes to footy I got into it through school, in year seven the GIANTS Academy invited me to go to the state trials in Albury. I did about five weeks’ worth of training but because I was playing soccer at the time I gave it up, I wasn’t really that interested. 

About three or four years later when I was 15, I received a message from Jason Saddington (GIANTS Academy Coach) to come and try out for the under 16s Academy and I made it.

I then had the option to continue with soccer or go on to play footy and I ended up trying something new and chose footy.

From there I made all the teams and was drafted to the GIANTS. I was the first graduate of the Western Sydney GIANTS Academy to play AFL when I made my debut in round six this year (2018).

 

What’s it like to play for a team that represents one of the most multicultural regions in the country?

It’s unbelievable because the GIANTS do a lot for the many cultures that make up western Sydney. Our vice-captain Stephen Coniglio also does a lot for multiculturalism on behalf of the club. The club has specific programs and host events like breakfasts, lunches and dinners for different cultures. Most recently we held NAIDOC celebrations and a little while back we held an Iftar Dinner. The club, to me, is really inclusive of the many cultures in our region.

 

What does multiculturalism mean to you? 

It means a lot to me because it means so much to my mum. She loves her culture and when I was younger it played such an important role as most weekends we’d got to my grandmother’s house and they’d have heaps of people come over and have big dinners. It was important that people embraced that and learned about that side of her and my family’s culture.

 


 

You can watch the GIANTS play St Kilda this Saturday in the Multicultural Round