Byron's delightful double

Click here to read story on the Northern Rivers Echo website

Identical 16-year-old twins Bridget (left) and Sophie Thomson play for Byron Bay in the Solahart Women’s Premier competition.

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I watch many games of football every week and players start to look the same after a while. This is particularly true for junior teams when boys and girls can be very difficult to distinguish, particularly with my limited eyesight. I am very interested in knowing as many players as possible and fortunately all competitive teams have numbered shirts. Working out who is who can be tricky, especially when I have heard parents calling out support for their own child, only to realise that the blonde headed kid is in fact not “their” blonde headed kid….Whoops!!

Easy mistake to make sometimes and for Gary and Melissa Thomson, this situation has occurred many times. These parents have a legitimate excuse however because they are the parents of identical twin girls. Sophie and Bridget Thomson are two delightfully vibrant young ladies who are part of a unique group of people who are physically identical. Sophie (that’s her on the right…or is that the left?) is a talented goal keeper. Her exploits have drawn much acclaim in recent years from influential judges of football talent, like National Women’s coach, Tom Sermanni. Sophie was selected in the National Under 17 squad last season, a pathway for future Matildas. A regular member of regional and state sides for several seasons, Sophie continues to impress talent scouts with her skill and positive attitude. Sharing this passion for football is Sophie’s twin Bridget, who is equally versatile in the sporting arena. The girls are part of a young Byron Bay team in the Solahart Women’s Premier Division with Bridget, a defensive player and Sophie in goals.

Both sisters have a love of surfing (may explain the magnificent long blonde hair?) along with a list of sporting achievements that covers almost every imaginable pursuit. These young ladies are extremely grounded, each with a most placid demeanour. Perhaps their ability to embrace life in a totally positive way is a reflection of their devotion to hundreds of animals on the two hectares that the family has at Cumbalum. Bridget hopes to pursue a career in animal care, either with the RSPA or volunteering around the world. Sophie has a dream of being a professional footballer or coach and is well on the way.

These creative, talented, immensely lovely young women are destined to make a powerful contribution to whatever they do. Telling these girls apart is not an issue as they are equally charming individuals blessed with a gentle nature and full of humility. Seeing double may not always be a good thing but in the case of Sophie and Bridget, it is an absolute pleasure.

Steve Mackney, Football Far North Coast