A whole new ball game

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From the golden sands of Sum­mer Bay to the MCG, act­ing has taken Reece Milne (above) to high and low places in be­tween.

When he won the role of Doc in new ABC footy drama The War­riors, he was driv­ing a bread truck to make ends meet.

“I fin­ished work at eight in the morn­ing, had a cof­fee, then went round to the au­di­tion,” he says. “I was too ex­hausted to psych my­self out of it or to worry. I was re­ally hop­ing to get it be­cause driv­ing that bread truck was re­ally tough.”

Milne says he had run out of cash earned dur­ing his stint on Home and Away.

“I did a shock­ing job at sav­ing,” he says. “I spent ev­ery penny I had in LA do­ing pi­lot sea­son.”

So the role of a footy bad boy came as some­thing of a god­send to Milne. Star­ring along­side Lisa McCune, John Howard and Vince Colosimo, his char­ac­ter has a pen­chant for play­ing up.

“He’s got that sort of dark, brood­ing thing that you can sink your teeth into. He isn’t re­ally a bad­die — I’ve been play­ing a lot of bad­dies — he’s very three di­men­sional.”

Pro­fes­sional footy play­ers of­ten make head­lines for the wrong rea­sons, pro­vid­ing The War­riors with plenty of in­spi­ra­tion for sto­ry­lines. Ex­pected to be role mod­els at a young age, Milne says it’s lit­tle won­der they get in trou­ble.

“They give them half a mil­lion bucks a year then won­der why at 23 they get caught do­ing some­thing they shouldn’t be do­ing,” he says. “More needs to be done to pre­pare the kids for that tran­si­tion. And of course we need to re­mem­ber it’s just a game.”

WATCH THE WAR­RIORS, ABC, WED­NES­DAY, 9.30PM

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