His Western Bulldogs might have lost their AFLW season opener but Nathan Burke still had a beaming smile on his face post-game as he enjoyed a proud father moment.
His daughter Alice celebrated a win in her AFLW debut as St Kilda secured a thrilling nine-point victory of the Bulldogs on Friday night and Nathan embraced her on the ground afterwards.
The 18-year-old entered the competition in last year’s draft as St Kilda’s first father-daughter selection.
Nathan is a legend at Moorabbin, captaining the club in a decorated 323-game career from 1987 to 2003.
He admits the build-up to Friday night’s match was different but was too focused during the game to take in much of Alice’s performance.
“Once the game started, there’s so much going on, I didn’t really concentrate (on Alice),” Nathan said.
“So if you ask me how she went, I’m probably going to have to watch the video.
“After the game she said she loved it so hopefully she did well enough to get another go next week where I can sit down and play the dad role.
“I’m conscious of potentially something I might tell her to do is not what the coaches here (at St Kilda) want her to do so it’s best to keep out of that and work on the mental side of it.”
Alice concentrated on soccer for most of her youth before switching to Australian rules football in 2018.
She started on the bench and had little involvement in the contest but will improve considerably as St Kilda look to challenge for the finals.