But occasionally the game serves a greater purpose.
This Sunday’s Kalin Foley Cup at Heathridge Park is one of those occasions.
In 2012, Kalin, a player with the Wanneroo Junior Football Club, was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, rhabdomyosarcoma. He was just 12.
While the Prendiville Catholic College student continues to battle the disease, family, friends, teammates and football community members have rallied around him in support.
The Kalin Foley Cup originally began as a fundraiser for the Foley family in 2012, but it has since grown to raise thousands of dollars for the Perth-based Sock it to Sarcoma cause and the Princess Margaret Hospital oncology ward.
Kalin’s mum Brigitte, who quit work to be at her son’s side while he underwent treatment, described the match between the Year 9 Wanneroo and Ocean Ridge teams as an ’emotional day’.
Kalin will walk through a pre-match guard of honour and toss the coin in the lead-up to bounce down.
‘It means a lot to Kalin seeing two different groups of friends helping him out at a bad time in his life,’ she said.
‘The Wanneroo team was where he first started playing footy and then when he moved to high school, he made some new friends who played for Ocean Ridge.
‘It’s great to see the two different communities coming together and supporting us.’
This weekend, West Perth Football Club has sought special permission from the WA Football Commission to wear one white sock against Claremont as part of the sarcoma awareness drive.
The Sock it to Sarcoma initiative encourages fundraisers to wear odd socks on a nominated day.
It’s a first for the club and an important Falcons occasion, with one of their own ” district manager Andrew Ridley ” currently supporting his wife as she endures treatment for the rare angiosarcoma.
Mrs Foley was moved to see the high-profile WAFL side supporting the cause.
Kalin’s great uncle Brian Foley was a champion footballer for the Falcons, playing 202 games from 1954-65.
‘It’s pretty exciting,’ she said.
‘It’s not usual for a club to be out of uniform.
‘It’s a big deal for them to commit to that.’
Kalin Foley Cup
When: Sunday, August 24
Time: 10am to 4pm.
Where: Heathridge Park
West Perth Sock it to Sarcoma round
When: Saturday, August 23
League 2.05pm, Reserves 11.25am, Colts 9am
Where: Claremont Showground