A dual code star of Australian sport, Erin has forged a remarkable professional career in both basketball and Australian football, leaving an indelible mark on the AFLW as the competition's first genuine star.
The daughter of a South Australian football legend and a prodigiously gifted athlete in her own right, Erin rose through local basketball ranks to shine as a point guard for the Adelaide Lightning in the WNBL before being selected in the 2005 WNBA Draft by the Connecticut Sun.
She went on to win WNBA Championships with the Indiana Fever and the Phoenix Mercury before taking on the role of development coach with the Dallas Wings.
Phillips shone just as brightly at international level, proudly representing the Australian Opals for more than a decade, including two Olympic Games, where she won a historic silver medal in 2008 to go with 2006 World Championship Gold and 2014 Bronze.
She also spent extensive time in the Polish league, winning 3 Championships and 2 All-Star awards.
But Australian Football was always Phillips’ first love. She had reluctantly given the game away at age 13 due to lack of female pathways, so when the AFLW competition was announced in 2017, she couldn’t sign up quickly enough.
Phillips took the AFLW by storm from the outset, named best on ground as she captained the Adelaide Crows premiership team, also winning League MVP in an unforgettable inaugural season.
She has since captained the Crows to a second premiership in 2019 (again named best afield in the Grand Final) and is a two-time AFL Players’ Association MVP winner.
A naturally prolific ball-winner, Phillips has clean hands and remarkable strength on the ground and in the air, making her a nightmare match-up for opposition coaches.
As a leader, she brought her elite high-performance background to bear on the AFLW, setting the benchmark for others to aspire to and instilling a culture of hard-work and professionalism across the competition.
The high regard in which Phillips is held by fans and opposition players alike was never more evident than when the 2019 AFLW Grand Final was halted as she was carted from the field with a serious knee injury. The hush around Adelaide Oval was followed by an incredible sustained standing ovation as Carlton players came across to wish her well.
A role model for young girls and boys alike, she will go down in history as one of the central characters in the creation of AFLW.
Away from the footy field and basketball court, Erin and wife Tracy are mums to their three children Brooklyn, Blake and Drew.
Aspiring to forge a legacy as an athlete that is also a leader for change, Phillips is paving the way in pushing boundaries within women’s sport, with issues such as diversity and the courage to innovate and do things your way close to her heart.
She is passionate about health and fitness, family, the welfare of animals and the planet.
A highly sought after speaker and ambassador in the corporate world, Phillips is currently an ambassador for Puma, Chemist Warehouse (INC Protein), Toyota, Metro Homes and the Australian Football League.
She is also an impressive and natural media performer, having gained experience in both television and radio.
When I was born, people felt sorry for him because he didn’t have a son to play footy someday, to carry the Phillips name. Dad, I know you’re watching and mum, I hope I’ve made you proud, and you can stick it up those people who said that to you.
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