This is another instalment of Mamamia’s ‘Sport Siren’ series – where we will shine a spotlight on a brilliant woman involved in Aussie sport every single Saturday.
This is Kyah Simon’s story…
Kyah Simon was eight years old when she knew she wanted to be a soccer player.
She was born into a rugby league family (and played for many years) but when her best friend and next door neighbour in Quakers Hill, a suburb in Sydney’s west, hassled her to join him at the local soccer club and she agreed, that was it. She fell in love.
Obsessed after just a few sessions, the determined little girl declared to her mum she was going to be a soccer star, for Australia no less. Oh, and Manchester United, obviously.
Simon never managed the latter but in 2007, at 16, the teenager was crowned a Matilda.
Four years later, the striker -- whose mother is a proud Anaiwan woman and father a Biripi man -- became the first Indigenous Australian to score a goal in a FIFA World Cup.
"When I actually did it I didn’t know what I had achieved until after the game," she tells Mamamia, adding it was a journalist who first broke the news to her.
"At the time -- actually I still can't really, I have to pinch myself -- I couldn't get my head around the enormity of that statement. I’m privileged to wear the Australian jersey, let alone achieve something like that," she says.
"It wasn’t a male, it was a female and it was another indigenous role model for young girls."