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Footy forward sets sights on Miss Universe Australia

Sharni-Leigh Kittow.
Sharni-Leigh Kittow.Picture: Marie Nirme/The West Australian

On the field she is a force to be reckoned with as a forward in the WA Women’s Football League.

But Sharni-Leigh Kittow has her sights set on another major goal — becoming the first indigenous Miss Universe Australia.

The 23-year-old Swan Districts player was earlier this month named a finalist for Miss West Coast, which feeds into the prestigious international pageant.

While Kittow’s primary reason for entering the quest was to build confidence, she told AAA it would be “amazing” to represent her country and culture in Miss Universe.

“My mum is Aboriginal Australian and my dad is English and I definitely consider myself as an indigenous Australian, even though I may not look it to some people,” Kittow said.

“I am very proud of my heritage and where I come from.”

The Albany-raised blonde’s beauty quest ambition is a world away from her sporting career, which she hopes will eventually lead to a place in the recently established AFL Women’s League.

“I would absolutely love to play on that level,” Kittow said.

“I have just made the under-23 Women’s State AFL team and then making the State finals for Miss West Coast, it’s like being on the same level for both.

“People are surprised that I model and play footy because they don’t complement each other at all but I feel like I get the best of both worlds — I can be the tomboy I have always been and I can be the girly-girl too.”

Kittow, whose partner of three years Marty Zambotto has also played WAFL, added it frustrated her when people called football a “men’s game”.

“If men can do it, why can’t we?” she said.

“We should have equal opportunities.”

Sharni-Leigh Kittow.
Sharni-Leigh Kittow.Picture: Marie Nirme/The West Australian
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