Famous name in Blues' No.5, Pies reveal leaders

IT'S THIRD time around for a skipper, there's a new generation at the Blues, and the Bulldogs backing up after a flag round out the news from week four of the NAB AFL Women's pre-season.

Familiar name in the No.5 

It will be back to the future for Carlton fans, with father-daughter selection Abbie McKay set to wear her dad Andrew's No.5 guernsey.

Abbie is the first father-daughter selection in the AFLW, after Carlton nominated the midfielder in October's AFLW Draft.

Andrew, who stepped down as the club's head of football at the end of the 2018 AFL season, played 244 games for Carlton from 1993-2003. 

The Blues' AFLW No.5 was previously worn by Kate Gillespie-Jones, who has moved to expansion club North Melbourne. 

Key forward Tayla Harris has moved from the No.22 to 7 (the number she wore at Brisbane in 2017) after it was vacated by the delisted Sarah Last.

Recruits and draftees Maddy Prespakis (No.4), Millie Mullane (nee Barden, 8), Kirby Bentley (13), Brooke Walker (14), Chloe Dalton (15), Charlotte Wilson (20), Rhiannon Watt (22), Jess Edwards (25), Emerson Woods (27) and Jayde Van Dyk (36) also received their numbers.

Captain 'Choch', mark III 

Steph Chiocci will captain Collingwood for a third successive season, alongside an expanded leadership group.

Midfielder Emma Grant remains co-vice-captain, while Ash Brazill, who also plays for the Magpies' team in the Super Netball competition, was also named co-vice-captain.

Britt Bonnici will be in the leadership group for the second year, with forward Sarah D'Arcy and injured key position player Chloe Molloy added to the group. 

Molloy will sit out the season with a Lisfranc injury in her right foot but will take a role as an opposition analyst.

The leadership group was decided by peer and self-nominations and an interview, overseen by the club's new general manager of women's sport, Jane Woodlands-Thompson.

"We wanted to create a process that not only uncovered the most appropriate leaders for the team, but also educated the group on what it takes to be a leader at Collingwood," Woodlands-Thompson said. 

"With 13 players (out of 30) between the ages of 18 and 21 in our AFLW team, we think it's very important for our young, emerging players to understand what it takes to become a great leader. 

"Steph is a seasoned leader and it's with great pride that she has been appointed captain along with Emma, Ash, Britt, Sarah and Chloe in the leadership team,” she said. 

"It's a great dynamic within the group and we think we've struck a balance of experience, knowledge and skills, along with representation of the whole team." 

Leah Kaslar (Brisbane), Chiocci (Collingwood), Kara Donnellan (Fremantle), Melissa Hickey (Geelong) and Emma Kearney (North Melbourne) are the confirmed captains so far for the 2019 season. 

From hunters to the hunted 

Brooke Lochland has said a revamped Western Bulldogs side is not overly concerned about being targeted following the club's 2018 AFLW flag.

The Bulldogs have lost eight players from their flag-winning squad, including competition best and fairest Emma Kearney and fellow midfielders Jenna Bruton and Daria Bannister to expansion side North Melbourne, and senior leader Aasta O'Connor to Geelong.

A further four players – Jess Anderson, Rachel Ashley, Laura Bailey and Kim Ebb – were delisted.

"We don't talk about [winning the flag] too much," Lochland told reporters at the club's family day.

"We celebrated that last [season]. It's a new year, a new chapter. We've got a different group, so we'll be looking at building on our culture from last year and hopefully it all goes well." 

Lochland said it had been a big week for the club, after star young forward Izzy Huntington appeared to have re-torn her reconstructed right ACL, only for scans show a minor knee strain.

"It was pretty emotional for all of us," Lochland said. 

"She's such an important part of our group and she's the ultimate teammate and we just want to see her out on the track. 

"We're happy it's positive.” 

Huntington is set to resume full training after the Christmas break.

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