Sport

Mum realises dream to play soccer with four daughters

IN THE FAMILY: Lesley Taylor (front left) plays for Westlawn Tigers with her daughters Raylene Taylor, Keanah Scholes, Shakarni Scholes and Denise Taylor. PHOTO: DEBRAH NOVAK
IN THE FAMILY: Lesley Taylor (front left) plays for Westlawn Tigers with her daughters Raylene Taylor, Keanah Scholes, Shakarni Scholes and Denise Taylor. PHOTO: DEBRAH NOVAK

NOT many people claim to have played competitive sport with all their children, let alone at the same time.

But Lesley Taylor is one such mum. This season she has played for Westlawn Tigers in North Coast Football's Women's Second Division with all four daughters - Denise, 27, Raylene, 24, Keanah, 18, and Shakarni, 17.

For Taylor it is no fluke. She endures ongoing injuries in a conscious effort to remain involved long enough to see it become a reality, with the youngest, Shakarni, joining the side this year.

"I'm just glad to be playing with them all," Taylor said. "The main goal was to play with the four of them. It's why I've stayed with it as long as I could.

"Whether we won or lost didn't matter - just to be on the field has been achievement enough for me.

"I've had injury after injury the last five years, and had to work really hard just to be healthy enough to play."

Taylor didn't start playing soccer until Denise was about 12. It's the journey that has made the feat all the more special.

"I went through a bad patch when my dad died," she said. "I wanted to meet people, and that's when I started to play soccer.

"The girls wanted to play, too, and that's when I realised they look up to me as a role model. I think it's a really positive thing that we are playing together."

Furthermore, her nieces, Jaylarni Ballangarry and Kiara Williams, also play.

The girls are trying to convince Taylor to play again next year. But this could be the last time regardless.

"Keanah is hoping to get accepted into dance college, which would mean moving to Gosford," Taylor said.

The side has not enjoyed success in terms of results so far in 2014. But having just four teams in the competition means Westlawn will play finals. Westlawn narrowly lost 3-2 to minor premiers Maclean Bobcats two weeks ago.

Topics:  fitness sport