East Fremantle and Subiaco unite to support Ariella Italiano in WAFLW A Team Cup

Headshot of Eliza Reilly
Eliza ReillyThe West Australian
Sofia Italiano (5) and her sister Ariella (7).
Camera IconSofia Italiano (5) and her sister Ariella (7). Credit: Supplied

Fierce WAFLW rivals are set to combine for a greater cause on Sunday at New Choice Homes Park when East Fremantle and Subiaco host the second annual A Team Cup.

The clash between the undefeated Sharks and 5th placed Lions, who are fighting to stay in finals contention, will take on greater significance when the teams run out in support of Ariella Italiano.

Italiano, 7, is one of less than 100 people worldwide who suffer from a rare genetic condition known as TBC1D24.

The A Team cup was first coined by East Fremantle last season, giving their players and supporters the chance to raise awareness and funds for the TBC1D24 Foundation.

“The A Team Round is incredibly important to the East Fremantle Women’s Football Club” Sharks head coach Matt Templeton said.

“Ariella’s resilience, courage and mental strength is a real inspiration to the playing group and shows them there’s no challenge within the game they can’t overcome”.

Both clubs will also wear ‘The A Team’ warm up tops pre-game and Italiano has been invited to run out alongside the Sharks.

Sofia Italiano (5) and her sister Ariella (7).
Camera IconSofia Italiano (5) and her sister Ariella (7). Credit: Supplied

East Fremantle and Subiaco’s men’s clubs will also show their support for The A Team when they clash on Saturday at the WACA.

“We have been overwhelmed by the level of support received from East Fremantle Women’s Football Club and the wider community for ‘The A Team round and TBC1D24”, Brooke Italiano, Ariella’s mother said.

“The funds we raise from The A Team game will bring us another step closer to finding treatments to support children globally who, like Ariella, suffer every day from the mental and physical challenges associated with TBC1D24”.

Also in round 15, Peel Thunder host Subiaco on Saturday and Swan Districts clash with South Fremantle on Sunday.

It comes as Fremantle utility Maggie MacLachlan informed the club of her desire to join wantaway forward Gemma Houghton at AFLW expansion club Port Adelaide.

Signed ahead of the 2021 season, the second-year utility played two games across her time at Fremantle.

Round 15

Saturday May 28

Peel Thunder v Claremont -2:20pm at Lane Group Stadium

Sunday May 29

East Fremantle v Subiaco - 2pm at New Choice Homes Park

Swan Districts v South Fremantle - 2pm at Steel Blue Oval

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails