Newtown Breakaways celebrate 20 years

This week the Newtown Breakaways celebrates 20 years of being part of the AFL community in Sydney.

The club was founded in 2002 as a breakaway group from the Sydney Uni Bombers to play in the Sydney Women’s Australian Football League.

Its red and white stripes were an ode to Newtown’s Blood-Stained Angels which was a force in the Sydney footy scene from 1903 until 1987, playing in 37 grand finals. Junior club, Newtown Swans, established in 2000 also wear red and white.

The Breakaways has had its fair share of success since its inception, including winning seven flags in women’s competitions. However, it’s the club’s inclusive nature which is where its reputation has blossomed. The club has always taken steps to ensure diverse players are welcome and has particularly celebrated its LGBTQIA+ players and extended community.

A highlight of the Breakaways’ came in 2013 when it became the first AFL affiliated group to march in Sydney’s Mardi Gras parade. It rolled the Big Breakaway Ball down Oxford Street – no one in the crowd could miss this footy!

The famous Big Breakaways Footy as famous on the field as marching down Oxford Street during Mardi Gras


The club fielded its first men’s side in 2020, ensuring anyone who wants to play with the Breakaways can. The club continues to focus on Women’s AFL but will engage with all genders to play footy all levels in AFL Sydney. The Breakaways’ recruitment slogan is “AFL for All” – a sentiment we can all get behind.

Congratulations to the Breakaways for two decades of footy, fun and genuine inclusivity.


The club has dedicated this Saturday, 13 August to celebrating 20 years of footy. HJ Mahoney Park in Marrickville will host four matches and include a Welcome to Country and presentations from local MPs. An after party will be held from 6pm at the Salisbury Hotel in Stanmore.

Anthony Albanese (and his dog, Toto) celebrate Pride Round with the Breakaways in 2019