Sailor takes a shot at world stage

Department of Defence

Leading Seaman Matthew Parry has played football since he was a boy, now his dream is to play for the ADF.

“I grew up watching football. My dad is from the UK so I had a lot of exposure,” he said.

The Liverpool supporter – who enlisted in 2013 as a boatswain’s mate before transferring to aircrewman in the MH-60R – played for ship teams before he was offered the chance to go for a spot in the Navy side in 2022.

“I tried out and made the cut for the Navy national’s team,” he said.

“The first game outside of the interservice national’s carnival I played was a game that celebrated the US Independence Day in Darwin.”

The opportunity for ADF selection will be at the ADF Football Federation Championship in October.

“I’m just playing consistent football and at club level locally and working towards attaining the position,” Leading Seaman Parry said.

“You can’t bank on it. Everyone is offered the same opportunity as everyone else.”

If selected, he will go to a trial’s development camp for further assessment.

This year, Navy has a week-long training camp before selecting a side to play against the US Marines on July 4 to coincide with US Independence Day.

“This is the second iteration, the first was last year,” he said.

The defender trains two days a week and plays for an A-grade local team in the Illawarra District League for Shoalhaven Football Club.

“That just involves all aspects of football and fitness, outside of that I go to the gym and keep fit,” Leading Seaman Parry said.

“Participating in these sports can help improve overall fitness and endurance, which is important for military duties.”

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