Millie Boyle’s sporting family sticks together through thick and thin

The SAS star has grown up tough.
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Millie Boyle has certainly impressed viewers throughout her stint on SAS Australia. Having grown up playing rugby union and league, the youngest recruit knows the value of being tough – much to Ant Middleton’s delight.

WATCH: SAS Australia | Meet Millie Boyle

Millie, who now plays for the Women’s Brisbane Broncos, has been surrounded by footy since she was born in Cobargo, New South Wales. Her father, David, and uncle, Jason Croker, were professional rugby players for the Canberra Raiders.

Her older brother Morgan and her cousin Lachlan also play for the Canberra Raiders.

Growing up in a sporty family, Millie was inspired to play as well.

“Being a girl, it didn’t really change any expectations,” she told Body + Soul in 2021. “My older brother played, so I played.”

Millie is one of five kids. (Credit: Instagram)

When she turned 12, the reality star made the “heartbreaking” realisation that there was no league teams for girls, so she switched to union throughout her time at high school.  

“Rugby union was the only thing available at high school football wise, and when I was in year 9 I got asked to be a part of the Brumbies schoolgirls team,” she told The Canberra Times.

Around the same time, Millie’s dad suffered a brain injury while working on the family farm in Cobargo. The athlete was found unconscious next to an irrigator in a cow paddock and flown to Canberra hospital where he was put in an induced coma.

David then spent four months in a brain injury rehabilitation clinic to re-learn how to perform small tasks and regain his memory.

Millie’s brother Morgan plays for the Raiders. (Credit: Instagram)

“It’s been pretty hard,” David’s wife Shelley told GH in 2010. “He’ll still say a lot of random things. Early on it was very emotional for all of us.”

Along with Morgan, Millie also has three younger sisters: Daisy, Hannah, and Stella.

Millie spoke about the impact the accident had on the whole family while appearing on The Unaffected Podcastdeeming the period of time “crazy”.

“He was in hospital for ages and forgot us all.”

In the same podcast, Millie also spoke about her second youngest sister, Hannah, who has Down syndrome.

Describing her sibling as “sassy”, Millie explained that in the days after Hannah was born, she couldn’t understand why it took a while to be able to visit her in hospital, unaware to the fact she was being treated in the ICU.

When Hannah finally arrived home, the confusion remained paramount.

“Mum was on the lounge holding Hannah when we walked in and mum was just crying,” Millie said. “And I’m like ‘Mum, what are you crying for? I’ve got a new little sister!’.”

Millie’s dad also played for the Raiders. (Credit: Instagram)

“Hannah wasn’t treated any different to any of us,” Millie continued, explaining that her younger sister was “calmer” and more “easy going” compared to the rest of the brood.

A firm advocate for mental health, Millie spends her time volunteering to accompany young people with disabilities on social outings as part of her friend’s organisation, Stellar Experiences.

The Broncos star is all about equality, crediting the trailblazers that made it possible for her to play rugby league, while also acknowledging there’s a long way to go.

“There are two ways of looking at it, because you can look at it from the perspective of the women playing 10, 20 years ago and they weren’t taken seriously,” the SAS star told Body + Soul.

“It’s come such a long way, it’s definitely something that a lot of the girls wished they could do full-time and make a career out of it… Maybe our daughters will be able to.”

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