By Renee Valentine
She is one of the most promising central defenders in Australia but seventeen-year-old Brooke Miller is happy to bide her time under internationals Megan Oyster and Hannah Bromley in her first full W-League season.
Miller, who is juggling HSC studies with football commitments, was part of the Emerging Jets squad last season and was called upon to make a handful of appearances for the senior team when they were short.
This year she was offered a place in the squad from the start of the season and is relishing being around experienced players like United States import Oyster and New Zealand international Bromley.
“Training with the squad last year, with players like Emily van Egmond, was a great experience, just being able to learn off them,” Miller said.
“This year for me is just about keeping improving and learning off the older players.”
The Kahibah Football Club junior hopes the experience translates to both a starting spot for next W-League season as well as continued representative honours after travelling with the Young Matildas to the AFC Asian under-20 Cup in August.
Miller has twice come off the bench for the Jets this season and coach Craig Deans said she had proven to be a versatile member of his squad.
“It is tough for her this year as we’ve got the two internationals as centre-backs but I spoke to her early in the season and said it was a good chance to watch and learn from them,” Deans said.
“She got a chance to come up front against Adelaide and came on at right back in Brisbane and did a good job up against Emily Gielnik, who has a lot of experience.
“Centre-back is a tough position at 17 as it takes a lot of communication … but she has the potential to be a strong centre-back. Technically she is quite good, she passes the ball well and reads the game well.”