If there is one thing Australian championship netballer Sharni Layton attributes to her success, it's being resilient.
With a career on the netball court spanning more than a decade, in addition to a recent stint in the AFLW, sport has always been an important part of Layton's life.
"I'm so grateful to have missed out on a few team selections when I was around 12-years-old," Layton said.
"A lot of kids miss out on teams and then just quit, but it's the people that miss out when they're younger who are the ones that become superstars.
"They never let setbacks stop them and they strive for their goals.
"I grew up going to the netball courts every Saturday, also riding horses and lifesaving - sports are all I did."
Throughout her netball career Layton played with multiple teams in the now ceased ANZ Championship and most recently with the Collingwood Magpies in the Suncorp Super Netball league.
Now retired from netball, Layton came to Bendigo to share her experience and knowledge with students from Girton Grammar as part of her role with Collingwood as an ambassador for women's sport.
"I love getting back out into the community and giving back after all of the support I've been given over the years," Layton said.
Year 12 Girton student Ella Fisher, 17, said Layton was an inspiration to young girls.
"We don't get a lot of players from Melbourne come out to Bendigo, so it's great for us to aim towards something and to see what we can achieve," Fisher said.
"Not only through her ability to engage with people on the netball court and football field but to show us that if we go out there and try our hardest, things will work out."
It was at the same age as Fisher that Layton started to take netball seriously, with an appointment to Victorian squads.
"I made it onto a team down in Frankston, which got me into an academy and then to the state team," Layton said.
"I just loved it, so I wanted to see what I could make of it," Layton said.
In addition to playing in Australian netball leagues, Layton achieved two Netball World Cup gold medals and gold at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games.
And to polish it all off, Layton took to the footy field with Collingwood in 2019 for her debut AFLW season.
"I loved getting outside onto the grass, I felt like a kid again learning new things, it really gave me a new lease on life," Layton laughed.
The Collingwood Magpies will host the West Coast Fever at the Bendigo Stadium on May 25 for round five of the 2019 Suncorp Super Netball season.
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