Published: 9 Feb 2022
The Casey Fields sporting complex in Cranbourne East has undergone a significant transformation that will celebrate and encourage women’s participation in sport.
The complex is home to Melbourne Football Club and considered to be the heart of regional sport for South East Melbourne.
Now, thanks to an $8 million redevelopment completed at the end of 2020, it features state-of-the-art facilities. They include dedicated AFLW change rooms and amenities, medical and physiotherapy rooms, a warmup space, massage and strapping area, a small theatre, canteen, an in-ground ice bath, gymnasium and indoor training centre.
The interest in women’s Australian Rules football has exploded in recent year and Casey Fields is designed to nurture players from community level through to AFLW, as well as continuing to support the men’s teams.
Celebrating women in sport
One of the most impressive features of the redevelopment is a huge outdoor mural celebrating women in sport.
The artwork is by Melbourne artists Danielle Weber and Amanda Newman. It covers one whole side of the indoor training centre and can be seen from the busy Berwick-Cranbourne Road, where Casey Fields is located.
Ms Weber said the piece speaks to the inclusiveness of women in a sport that has been dominated by men for so long.
“It crosses all borders and barriers to women of all backgrounds and strengths,” she said.
“This was about the power of women achieving their potential in whatever they challenged themselves to explore.
“This artwork allowed me to express and speak to my audience that, ‘we can and will continue to break down these barriers and keep defying the odds’, despite the challenges we still fight in society today.”
Inclusiveness and diversity are represented both through the players and in the faces of the crowd members in the background of the mural.
“Even in the silhouettes we see the multitude of backgrounds enjoying a culturally inclusive sport,” she added.
“Everyone can participate in Aussie Rules.”
It took Ms Weber and her team two full weeks of 12-hour days to complete the mural in December 2020, without counting the time it took to prepare the design.
Describing Casey Fields today, Danielle said the facility is “outstanding”.
“As a facility it provides its community, and people from far-reaching communities, the opportunity to access premium grade facilities,” she said.
Tyla Hanks, who plays for Melbourne Football Club in the AFLW, was also quick to praise the new facilities. She played many matches at Casey Fields when she was a junior and is proud of her team’s home ground.
“People who come to Casey Fields to play are blown away by the facilities now,” she said.
“This upgrade highlights the overwhelming amount of support women’s footy has received in recent years.”