Nicola Biagi creates another slice of Barossa sporting history

Central District Football Club SANFL Women's inaugural captain Nicola Biagi with coach Shaun Ribbons, both from the Barossa. Photo: Peter Argent
Central District Football Club SANFL Women's inaugural captain Nicola Biagi with coach Shaun Ribbons, both from the Barossa. Photo: Peter Argent

Nicola Biagi has etched her name into Barossa football history by leading the Central Districts women’s side as the first captain of their SANFL woman’s team.

This Friday under lights, the 27-year-old, with a group of Barossa women footballers, head into their first game at City Mazda Stadium against West Adelaide.

“I was shocked and flattered when “Ribbo’ (senior coach Shaun Ribbons) announced the captaincy,” Nicola told Barossa Herald.

“When he was reading out the attributes of the captain, I thought he was talking about someone else.

“It’s a massive honour to be selected by my peers and I told my teammates I’ve always got their backs,” she added.

The community will remember Nicola for being named the 2017 Barossa Valley Vintage Festival Young Ambassador winner.

Currently she heads the 2019 ambassador program, along with being a SANFL Women ambassador and also works as a JB Hi-Fi sales manager.

Nicola’s full calendar also extends to squeezing in time for her Barossa folks Ralph and Annabelle, brother Ben and her partner, Kapunda footballer Aaron Whistler.

“All have been tremendous support, telling me I’m capable and supporting me in following my passion.”

Her humble football beginnings started in 2008 as a year 11 student at Nuriootpa High School.

She was an integral part of the team that won the state knockout high schools girl’s football competition and also was in leadership role in her year 12 side – a decade ago.

Like so many of her fellow players, Nicola had nowhere to go from a football perspective after high school.

“Nat Seaman got me involved at Tanunda last year, and after playing for the Central Zone in the 2018 State Country Championships in Renmark last July, I was invited out to Central District for this inaugural pre-season,” Nicola said.

“I’ve had a number of mentors and people that have supported me along the way.” She refers to Natalie Seaman coach Shaun Ribbons, partner Aaron and Tanunda Magpies’ teammate Zoe Healy.

“I’ve been counting down the sleeps to the first game and can’t wait to get stuck in on game night.”

“I believe we’re capable of playing finals football and I will be doing everything possible to play my role to achieve that for the team.”

First Central District Womens coach Shaun Ribbons said that Nicola is a natural born leader.

“Nic presents herself well and is committed to the program,” he said.

“She’s got herself really fit and strong. I love the great energy she brings to the group as well.

“She’s hard in her attack at the footy and is a real contested beast.

“These are the aspects of the game we like to pride ourselves on as a team.”

The Bulldogs women’s senior team makes its entrance into the SANFL Women’s competition this Friday evening, February 15, starting at 7:45 pm.