You may know him as one of the most fiercest defenders in the National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s competition having played for the likes of the Sutherland Sharks and now Wollongong Wolves, but now tough tackling Nick Littler is fighting a different kind of battle away from the football pitch and that’s being at the frontline battling COVID-19 as a registered nurse at the St George Hospital.
Littler is one of over 100,000 registered nurses in NSW currently working around the clock at the St George Hospital in the respiratory ward which has transformed to the COVID-19 ward.
“This COVID-19 virus has definitely affected me personally.
“As mentioned, I am a registered nurse and have been for the last six years.
“I am currently at St George Hospital and I am working in the newly created COVID-19 ward dealing with patients suffering with the illness and respiratory issues.”
Football has taken a back seat since the sport amongst many others suspended activity, but the 28-year-old has been on the go assisting people in desperate need of survival.
“Since the football lockdown I have been working (and stressing) about COVID-19.
“It’s been non-stop, I mean at time’s it’s difficult not knowing how bad the day will be but I’m just so thankful that I am still able to work and hopefully make a difference to all the people out there suffering from COVID-19 and to also provide for my family.”
Th fear of catching it himself has of course crossed the Wolves star’s mind but high level monitoring has assured he has kept it at bay.
“Yeah 100% I know of think with the amount of people getting it and how quickly its spreading, it’s kind of inevitable that I will get it.
“Obviously we do everything in our power not to but definitely there is always that fear there.”
Littler, amidst all the chaos, has managed to fit in some fitness time around his very hectic schedule keeping the body fit and the mind sane along with spending time with his lovely young family.
“For obvious reasons it’s not been easy to stay fit apart from being run off my feet at work.
“I’ve been doing some running just to keep ticking over while the NPL season is on hold.
“I also get some time to run around and kick a ball in the backyard with my daughter.
“Spending some really nice quality time with my wife Britt and my 2 kids Isla, she’s 3 and Henry who is 8 months has also been amazing.”
You could forgive Littler for not thinking about football too much but the ‘big man’ who was one of the key players that steered the Wolves to Premiership and NPL Glory in 2019 knows that the absence of football has been evident in more ways than one.
“I’ll tell you what I miss most about our game, winning.
“Coming off our season last year and winning like we did.
“I miss being able to do that every weekend.
“Also the banter in the team, we have a great bunch of lads and I’m actually missing not seeing them 4-5 times a week.”
Asked what his message was to the NPL NSW Football family regarding taking safety measures to minimise the spread, Littler did not mince his words.
“We have to do what’s been asked of us, social distancing and staying at home are the 2 most important things that someone can do at the moment.
“I’ve seen how bad this virus can be and the last thing I want to see is more people dying from it.
“So I want to stress how vital it is that those who can stay at home! Please!”
On behalf of the football family, Nick you are a real hero, keep fighting the fight we all applaud you.