The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - FRONT PAGE - FIONA BOLLEN re­ports.

Pas­sion was once all women had to pur­sue their sport­ing dreams. Now the age of pro­fes­sion­al­ism is trans­form­ingg the sport­ing p g land­scape, and the com­peti­tors them­selves. .

Women’s sport is thriv­ing.

A surge of in­vest­ment and in­ter­est has given a new gen­er­a­tion of hard­work­ing, ded­i­cated ath­letes the op­por­tu­nity to be­come even tougher, stronger and faster.

Award-win­ning Sun­day Tele­graph sports pho­tog­ra­pher Phil Hill­yard has spent time with some of our best as they sweated through the grind of train­ing in their quest to scale even greater heights.

WBBL and Aussie cricket su­per­star Ell­yse Perry, Matil­das and Syd­ney FC striker Caitlin Fo­ord, Iron­woman cham­pion Jor­dan Mercer, pad­dling world cham­pion Jes­sica Fox and GWS Giants AFLW cap­tain Amanda Far­ru­gia are cap­tured in their grit and glory.

All have ex­pe­ri­enced the highs and lows of top-level sport. All have played a part in the rock­et­ing rise of women’s sport in Aus­tralia. These are their sto­ries; about how they’ve tough­ened up for longer sea­sons, crit­i­cism from ri­vals and scru­tiny from the pub­lic.

GWS Giants AFLW cap­tain Amanda Far­ru­gia works a heavy bag in train­ing at Home­bush.

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