Tim Leahy can vouch for the fact that netball can be rough on the feet. And not just because he’s a second-year podiatry student.
Tim has not long returned from the uni games on the Gold Coast, where four days of non-stop netball netted his team gold in division two.
“Two of our players were in Australian teams, one of those from Bendigo, Jayden Cowling, so that was really good,” he says.
“Division one was crazy. There was one guy who was legitimately seven-foot, and you just couldn’t score.”
Tim started playing regular mixed netball this year, as a substitute for footy.
“I played football for Kilmore,” he says, having grown up in nearby Broadford. “When I moved to Bendigo last year for uni I kept playing and I travelled back and forth for games every weekend, but this year I had to give it up because I work on a Saturday.”
Tim started playing football in the Under-10s and joined the seniors at 17. He played in three grand finals, but the cup remained out of reach, so coming home with the netball gold made for a good change.
Tim lives on campus, and plays for a netball team in the residential games, and for another in the Feelgood Fitness uni games competition.
“It gives me a chance to be active after giving up footy,” he says. “And it’s just good to catch up with people and play sport.”
Tim says he loves meeting people – which is also why he volunteered to be a residential assistant this year. Basically, that means he has a group of 24 other campus residents he helps look out for.
“I really like meeting new people and I thought it would be a good way to do that,” he says. “And it has been. I’ve made heaps of new friends from it.
“The social life of living on campus is really good. There’s always people doing something, and it’s not always drinking. Even if it’s going for a swim or studying – there’s lots of people doing the same course as me and we study together. It’s just having that support, and I like being around people.”
Tim originally wanted to study physio, but says he didn’t quite reach the required ATAR.
“I went to a podiatry lecture on open day and I really enjoyed it,” he says. “Plus, I’ve always been into shoes – I used to play basketball and I loved the shoes.
“Netball is rough on the feet. It’s rough on the knees, too. But it’s alright when I wear my good basketball shoes. It’s hard watching people playing in Nike Frees, they’ve got no support. But, it’s their life. Their feet.”