Box Hill United senior women’s team have welcomed their latest member for 2019 – highly-rated defender Olivia Ellis, and the youngster is delighted to be back where it all started.
Ellis, who turns 20 this week, is a former Box Hill youth player, and despite her young age, has garnered a wealth of experience in Australian football and abroad.
She has seamlessly made the transition into her new squad this time around, making her 2019 NPLW debut with us against Calder United last Saturday.
Speaking about her Box Hill reunion, Ellis said, “It’s good to be back – it’s been seven years I think. It’s great – the culture’s really good, the coaches are good, and the girls are very nice and welcoming.
“I started here [with Box Hill] as a junior to learn how to play soccer – that was when I was six [years old]. And then I was here for seven years.”
Since moving away from Wembley Park after 2012/13, Ellis’ journey took her to some of the biggest names in the NPLW scene – Alamein FC, Bulleen Lions, Senior NTC and Boroondara Eagles.
As a 16-year-old, the versatile defender joined Melbourne City’s ladies side in 2015/16 and stayed there for two seasons, when the Melbourne giants bagged consecutive W-League titles. The youngster then went on to represent the Matildas’ U/20s in 2016.
Looking back fondly on her budding career, Ellis said, “It’s been a long journey – I have been playing for almost 13 years and I have had some really amazing experiences playing with some world-class players.
“And then I have done a lot of travelling – football is a world game and it has taken me to a lot of good places. It’s been really good.”
Melbourne-based Ellis added about her experience with the Australian U/20s national team, “It was an amazing experience, very professional and it was incredible to go to another country and play [against] their national teams.
“And we were playing [against] senior women as well, so that was a really good experience [while] playing in a younger team.”
Equally adept at playing as a centre-back and a full-back, Ellis banks on her reading of the game and experience and is never shy of jetting forward when the opportunity arises. She also had a brief stint with the Oregon State University while playing college football in the USA.