The Yuin woman, whose traditional lands lie on the NSW South Coast, won selection after selection in a raft of ACT and Australian sides that include Touch, Rugby Union, Youth 7s and Rugby League.
“I used to be really hard on myself, setting goals and really chasing a place in those rep teams. But I found that after I made it, I didn’t really feel the great sense of accomplishment that I thought I would. And so, I walked away looking for something that would make me happy,” she told NITV.
Dragisic discovered that fulfillment in the family environment of club footy. But now the 20 year old fullback admits her initiation into contact rugby - with the Canberra Royals club - was somewhat daunting.
“I sucked. I was so bad. I’d try and grab at jerseys because I was too scared to get my shoulder and head into contact. I was coming from a sport where a hard touch was considered rough.”
Yet, rugby union is in Dragisic’s blood. Her maternal grandfather – Ron Arnold – was a flanker for the Junior All Blacks. Little wonder she soon honed her tackling skills – well enough for a switch to rugby league.
“The Queanbeyan Blues really helped reinvigorate me,” she said. “It was a new scene with different people. I used to see Terry Campese down at the club. That was really cool. I also enjoyed playing in the halves – using a lot of my old touch skills.”
Now the former St Clare’s College student – who has her sights set on a career as a fire fighter - is set to debut in the 2018 Aon Uni 7s series for the University of Canberra.
“I watched my friends play in it last year and it looked like so much fun. I really like how the games are short and sharp.”
And Dragisic says can’t wait to rub shoulders with her Rugby 7s inspiration – Charlotte Caslick.
“I used to play touch against her growing up. She was such a good player with magic feet. And when you meet her - she is such a humble person. I was so flattered at a trial once when the then Australian Women’s Rugby 7s coach Tim Walsh called me ‘mini-Charlotte.’ That was such a compliment.”
The Uni 7s could be just the platform to catapult Dragisic into Australian selection orbit alongside Caslick. But if higher honors don’t come this season –Dragisic says she’ll be kept busy by her two pet dogs and planning for a reunion in her Serbian grandfather’s hometown of Plavno.
Family – now that’s one team where selection isn’t a contest.
You can watch Kasey Dragisic in the Aon Uni 7s - live this weekend from Canberra on rugby.com.au with delayed coverage on NITV at 3pm on Saturday 15 October.