WHENEVER Tara Meyer mentions she plays floorball, nine times out of 10 the response is: ‘Wait a minute, what’s floorball?’
The Claremont resident will represent Australia for the fifth time when she travels to Finland for the 2015 Women’s World Floorball Championships in December.
“I usually tell people floorball is like a cross between indoor and ice hockey; you have the rink, goals and a double-sided stick like ice hockey, but you’re running with shoes on a court,” she said.
Meyer said it was difficult to play such a relatively unknown sport in Australia.
“On one hand, we have lots of new players coming through and it’s really great to help them,” the John XXIII College graduate said.
“But in another sense it can be pretty bad, because we have absolutely no financial support from the government.
“We are completely self-funded. I have been selling chocolates since the beginning of last year, and that does not cover even a quarter of what I have to pay. Getting to a championship costs about $5000 to $6000 for each player, and I have been to four already. When I think about how much money I have spent on this sport, I could have half paid off a house by now.”
However, Meyer said there was light at the end of the tunnel.
“We only recently got recognition from Australian Sporting Commission, so now we’re on the list for junior funding,” she said.
“Slowly we are getting more sponsors, and more and more people are interested in floorball.
“But it’s not going to happen overnight. I will probably be retired by the time we get full sponsorship.”
The fast-paced game, fundraising and upcoming training camp are not the only things that have Meyer exhausted.
“I do not recommend getting married just a few months before going to world championships,” she said.
“Not only have I had no time off, my bank account definitely does not like it.”