The Redcliffe Tigers AFL Club’s senior women’s team got more than they bargained for in last weekend’s match against Alexandra Hills.
Coach Dylan Barker says play had to be stopped when a snake glided past players on the Alexandra Hills team bench and onto the field.
“All of a sudden the opposition girls on the bench started screaming and the snake slithered past them onto the field,” Dylan says.
“I ran down from the coaches’ box to keep an eye on it – we were looking for things to pick it up.”
Quick-thinking members from the Alex Hills Bombers produced a ball bag.
“We put the bag in front of the snake and it took shelter inside and we managed to pick it up and get rid of it.”
Dylan’s no stranger to reptiles, having kept pet snakes and handled pythons, but says he was a little alarmed when he realised they were dealing with a one-metre Eastern Brown Snake.
Eastern Browns, together with other brown snakes, account for more deaths in Australia each year than any other group of snakes.
Their venom is the second-most toxic of land snakes in the world.
“When I saw it was a brown I decided to play it safe – when it comes to those ones you stay clear,” he says.
Once safely in the bag, the snake was taken to nearby bushland and released.
Dylan, who’s been coaching for five years, says he’s encountered dogs and kangaroos on the field, but never a snake.
While Alexandra Hills went on to win the game by four goals, Dylan says the Tigers team is shaping up well.
“We were playing against the number one team, which is undefeated,” he says.
“We have recruited really, really well with our new facilities and have a number of girls from other local clubs.
“We’re in the process now of getting to know each other and we’re well and truly on track to having a successful women’s team.”
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