"STRAIGHT into it, hit hard."
That is how Mia Dopper describes her new sporting passion - rugby league - and the 14-year-old who is proud to call herself a Panorama Platypi is by no means alone.
Dopper is currently in her second season as a Platypi, playing in the under 15s division of the Western Women's Rugby League competition.
There are under 13s, under 18s and open age Platypi players as well and they have plenty of keen Western Division rivals in the form of Vipers, Castlereagh, Woodbridge, Mudgee and Goannas teams.
It is undoubtedly a big growth sport in the region and young females like Dopper are ranking it above their other pursuits such as league tag, basketball, netball and touch football.
"I play like five different sports, but this is definitely the top. I love it, it's like straight into it, hit hard," Dopper said.
"I'm such an aggressive person and I just love to tackle.
"Especially because I'm small at the start it was very intimidating, but now I just get into it."
One of Dopper's under 15s team-mates, Rhiani Rozga, is delighted to now have an opportunity to play a sport she previously watched boys participate in.
She was also nervous at first, but now relishes the physicality of rugby league and the camaraderie she has found with her fellow Platypi.
"I liked playing around with my brother a lot, I saw him play and I thought I might give it a go. It looked fun and it is so much fun," she said.
"Our first game was pretty nerve-racking, but after we all made our first tackles we were so revved up. Then we scored our first try we were like 'We've definitely got this in the bag now'.
"You think it's scary when you get out there, but you don't get hit that hard, it's hard to explain. It's fun, especially if you've got a good coach who can teach you how to tackle properly and run the ball properly, we learn a lot of plays.
"We are so supportive of each other, we've always got everyone's back and we make sure that we're all supporting each other and working as a team.
"I play AFL too which is kinda of similar. AFL and this are definitely my top two sports because there's that contact, you can get really aggressive, you don't have to be shy about it."
The under 15 Platypi began their latest campaign with a 26-6 win over the Vipers. It was a result which boosted the confidence of the club's new recruits and was relished by all.
"Our first game of last season we smashed them and then this season we smashed them too, it was awesome. We were kind of nervous before we got out there because we have got a lot of new girls this season, we have like got enough players for two full teams in our one team," Dopper said.
"The newer girls were a bit nervous and we got scored against first, but after that we put our heads in, we came together and we scored and we just kept scoring."
When it comes to the youngest Platypi, the under 13s, the feelings about rugby league are very similar.
"I'm a very aggressive person and I need a way to get it out of my system aside from fighting my brothers where I always loose," 12-year-old fullback Samantha Hanrahan said.
"It was sort of like a roller coaster, the first time is scary if anything, but then you just start getting used to it. It's fun.
"It's a great sport, now they've got the NRL involved with it and women are playing in the big leagues, I think it's pretty cool."
Bonny Campiao, who was switched from the centres to the front row for her first game against the Vipers, said she was inspired by the chance to try a non-traditional female sport.
While joking she was "crapping my pants" before her first touch of the ball and first impact, she now can't wait to take on her Western Division rivals.
"I played because it is with my friends and it shows women can do whatever sport men can do," she said.
"It was pretty scary, especially the ones who are way bigger than you. The first game you get really nervous, but then you go out there and you just do it. I'd highly recommend it to anyone."
The four Platypi teams will take on their Woodbridge Cup rivals this Sunday at Carrington Park, with the action commencing at 10am.