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Dalton daring to dream

The significance of Carlton Respects Pull your socks up this Sunday. The players talk about what the Carlton Respects game means to them.

CARLTON’S Chloe Dalton has turned into a fully fledged footy convert.

Born into a rugby union family in Sydney, Dalton brought a sudden end to her promising rugby sevens career – a stint that included winning a gold medal with Australia at the 2016 Rio Olympics – barely 18 months ago to chase a footy pipedream.

For the 25-year-old, it's proved a case of so far, so good.

After an impressive VFLW season for the Blues, Dalton has adapted to the demands of the game quickly.

She has played in all of Carlton's AFLW games this season, excelling over the last month to win double-digit disposals in three of her last four matches.

"I've been surprised by having to adjust to playing a 360-degree game," Dalton told womens.afl.

"That's been the one thing that's got me. Rugby is obviously very oppositional, because you've got your offside line and things like that.

 

"(In football) I got the ball in the first few games, someone came out of nowhere and I wasn't expecting it. Now, hopefully I've adapted to that.

"It's still something I'm working on, but I'm probably a lot better at that now than I was at the beginning. Hopefully I don't look as lost as what I think I did initially."

Dalton, an ambassador for Our Watch – a program that raises awareness for domestic violence against women and children – hopes to continue her solid run of form this week when the Blues take part in their annual 'Carlton Respects' match against Brisbane.

The Blues will wear orange socks to show their support for the program. It’s a critical fixture, with the winner well on the way to snaring a preliminary final spot.

The match will be the last of the round, though the now footy-mad Dalton will be watching as much footy as she can beforehand – something she never considered growing up.

 

"I watched it on TV, but I probably didn't have much of an understanding of it," Dalton said.

"Now that I've started playing, I wish I had followed it. I would've loved to have been involved in the game earlier, because I absolutely love being out there with the girls."

Dalton made the switch to footy alongside her Australian rugby sevens teammate Brooke Walker, saying the transition was aided by having a mate learning from similar challenges.

"We're really good friends, so that was cool to have her there," Dalton said.

"We didn't really know what was going on at the beginning. We were both learning at the same pace, so to have someone like that there was nice."