MACK Mills is pinching himself after earning the chance to play his two favourite sports at representative level within the space of four months.
The Warrnambool College student will play for Western Waves' under 16 side at the Cricket Victoria Country Cup in December.
The invite followed a chance to run out for GWV Rebels at the V/Line Cup - an annual statewide under 15 football competition - in September.
Mills, 15, said he was soaking up the experiences.
"It is a great honour. They're both high-level programs with high-level coaches," he said.
"As an athlete you want to play at the highest level you can and both V/Line Cup and Western Waves is a chance to do that."
Mills, who is in year nine, is a bottom-age prospect for the Waves who will start their country cup campaign in Hamilton on December 11.
"(Coach) John Houston is a very highly respected cricketer in our area and his knowledge is second-to-none so I will learn from him and Tommy Jackson is the assistant coach and he's had a Victorian contract in recent years," he said.
Mills plays for Allansford-Panmure in the Warrnambool and District Cricket Association and football for Hampden league powerhouse Koroit.
He made his division one debut for the Gators last summer and is eyeing a senior debut for the Saints in coming seasons.
The defender also featured in Koroit's thrilling under 16 on-the-siren grand final win against Cobden in September.
His passion for both sports was ignited at a young age.
"In winter I'd be at the Kolora-Noorat footy club with Dad (David) where he played and in summer it was always backyard cricket like most Aussie kids do," Mills said.
"I was always watching the Aussies, looking up to them, wanting to be them, and with footy I am a Carlton supporter and (captain) Patrick Cripps, I love him."
Sport is a major part of his family's life. Older sister Mia is a championship-winning Big V basketballer and older brother Jye Saunders was immersed in speedway.
"He used to race wingless sprints. A couple of years before he retired he might have been second in Australia at one point," he said.
"He also used to play a fair bit of basketball."
The Gators gave Mills his first division one cap during the 2022-23 summer "which was a great honour".
"It is pretty cool. I certainly won't forget that first day when I went out with the boys," he said.
This year the all-rounder, who is a pace bowler, has swapped between divisions one and two.
Mills, who is originally from Camperdown and travelled to America roughly 10 times for the sprintcar season when his dad was the Premier Speedway general manager, started his football with Warrnambool and District league side Allansford.
"I moved out to Koroit (to play) in 2020, the COVID year," he said.
"I had plenty of mates out at Koroit, went and trained a couple of times and loved it.
"We had a bit of success this year so I won't be leaving anytime soon. It (the under 16 grand final) was probably one of the coolest footy moments I have had, to win on the siren."
The Saints have started pre-season with Mills training with the senior group.
He plays in the back half and enjoys the ability to attack and "roll through the midfield occasionally".
"I am a fairly natural right-foot kick so I try and make that my weapon," Mills said.