When the whistle blows, Amber Rawson will be in hot pursuit of her target – but this time it won’t be a crook on the run.

The Footscray senior constable will trade her police boots for football boots this month as she laces up for the Australian Police rugby union team.

Consisting of the cream of rugby-playing police women from across Australia, the side will travel to Canberra to tackle a team from the Australian Defence Force.

Senior Constable Rawson said she was one of four Victorian members chosen for the squad.

“The defence team has invited us up there,” she said.

Senior Constable Rawson, who plays hooker, spent 14 years playing soccer before being poached by a rugby team.

She is currently in her third season playing with Power House, one of the oldest rugby union clubs in Victoria, after four years of playing the game in Townsville.

“Rugby is a very technical game and a very physical game,” she said. “I love both the physical and strategic side … I’m still learning stuff. Our Power House team is quite a small team and we play against teams that are much bigger, so you have to stay focused mentally and physically.”

Senior Constable Rawson said her rugby and policing fed into each other and that the game was a great way to stay fit.

She said recognition of women in previously male-dominated sport had come a long way since she was younger, particularly in light of the success of the AFLW competition.

“I wish it was like that when I was a bit younger,” she said. “They’ve got so many opportunities and so much support and different pathways.”

The match will be held at the ADF’s Duntroon base in Canberra on June 22.