LANGFORD resident Tyler Garner’s life is dominated by the round ball game, whether soccer or futsal.
An accomplished soccer player rising through the ranks of NPL WA outfit Inglewood United, he is also one of Australia’s most promising young futsal players, despite only taking it up less than three years ago.
Since his debut, Garner has earned a slew of awards, including Australian captain at the Junior Futsal World Championships in Florida last year, under-16 MVP at the 2017 Junior Futsal Championships and one senior title and two national junior titles with club side Claremont Cambio Cumbre.
Garner said he is still surprised at how a chance opportunity has opened up so many doors for him.
“A few of my mates went over to Melbourne for nationals and they needed an extra player, so they asked me to come down and it just went from there,” he said.
“Obviously before it started I didn’t know much about the sport, so to step into it and become successful as quick as I have, I’m just really happy with myself and how well I’ve done.”
Garner is also part of Lynwood Senior High School’s soccer program and coaches an under-10’s side at Lynwood Soccer Club.
He said he has a tough time balancing his schedule, given it is not uncommon for him to train and play up to ten times a week.
“Obviously I’ve got used to it over the past two years, but I do a lot off the pitch to try and get my body well for it,” he said.
“I’ve got to eat right, got to recover well – which is a credit to my mum for helping me out with that – all the time you’ve got to be ready, because it’s such a physically demanding sport, playing indoor and outdoor.
“It’s really hard trying to stay fit for both, you’ve got to be really strong, have good endurance to do it throughout the season but you do what you love, so I enjoy it.”
At some point, it is likely Garner will have to focus solely on one sport; something he said will be gut wrenching.
“It’s a really hard question, but if I had to choose one, it’ll be the one I’m enjoying the most, but it’s going to be one of the hardest decisions of my life.”