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How Tahlulah Tillett overcame adversity to realise her NRLW dream

23-year-old NRLW halfback Tahlulah Tillett is a proud Queenslander but called Newcastle home last season.

In an interview with Athlete’s Voice, Tillett spoke about how rugby league is in her DNA.

“I was born into a very big rugby league family,” Tillett said.

“My father Stephen played for the North Queensland Cowboys. As a little girl I wanted to be like him.”

Tahlulah did just that. At 18 she represented the North Queeensland Marlins and the Indigenous All Stars women’s team.

Just as her career was about to take off she suffered a massive setback.

“I suffered a lateral meniscus tear in my left knee which then required surgery.”

“That was my first major injury and that put me on the sidelines for about six months.”

Just as she recovered from that injury, Tillett suffered an ACL and meniscus tear to her right knee.

The Newcastle player admits that those two injuries back-to-back completely changed her outlook and she needed a lot of support to carry on and fight her way back to the top.

“I sort of isolated myself away from my family and friends,” she said.

“As much as I was struggling mentally I knew how important it was that I kept up my physical rehab.”

“No matter how hard it got I still knew I wanted to achieve this dream.”

That dream was to play in the NRLW and after a stint with the North Queensland Gold Stars she was signed by the Newcastle Knights and the rest is history.

“I think determination for me is just never giving up on something you believe in or what you want to achieve.”

“I want to inspire the next generation and have them understand that no matter what you go through there’s always a way out of it.”

You can catch the full interview with Tahlulah Tillett on Athlete’s Voice.

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