Richardson plays futsal for Victoria

LOCAL futsal player Maddi Richardson will be representing Victoria at the national championships.

Richardson will take the court donning the blue and white for the open women’s indoor soccer team.

After winning the silver medal at the nationals in 2013, she is hoping the team can go one better in Canberra.

Richardson had an exceptional tournament in 2013, scoring goals against Australian Capital Territory and New South Wales. Her strength, speed, power and ability to pressure players are her assets.

Richardson is one of only four players returning from the same team last year.

The team has been training weekly in Melbourne under coach Mark Torcaso.

The 12 player squad left for Canberra on Sunday to begin the tournament at the Australian Institute of Sport on Monday. The event will conclude on Friday.

Last year’s winner the ACT will again be the team to beat.

The growth of futsal worldwide continues to gain pace with the many benefits associated with the game beginning to be recognised by many coaches.

Being involved in futsal is an extension of players outdoor football where both sports complement each other.

With the smaller court and goal sizes, and only five-a-side, futsal players are constantly placed in demanding decision making situations, requiring quick thinking, good ball control, precise passing and vision. Factors required in building the complete footballer.

Richardson is only in her third year of futsal and has been fortunate enough to make the state team each year. She was also part of Melbourne Cobras when they won the state championship in her first season.

She is studying a Bachelor of Education at La Trobe University in Bendigo, and was part the winners of the university futsal competition.

She also plays in her home town of Sale in the local futsal mixed competition.

Richardson began outdoor football at the age of five and the 2014 squad will be her 10th state representative team, seven outdoor teams and three futsal.

Playing all of her junior outdoor football for Sale United and mixing in with the boys team, Richardson was mostly the only girl in each of her teams, however, she joined with all the best female players in Gippsland to represent the Gippsland Soccer League at many successful junior country and state championships, where she was captain.

Football has also taken Richardson to competitions in Singapore, England, Ireland and Scotland.

For the past three years Maddi has continued to play at the highest level for women in the state, the Victorian Women’s Premier League, with Box Hill United.