A RECORD six players from Canberra were selected in the NAB AFLW Draft, with a further 12 who have played footy in New South Wales also making their way onto AFLW lists.
Belconnen midfielder Maggie Gorham was the leader of the pack, selected with Greater Western Sydney's first pick (fourth overall), with Queanbeyan trio Jacqui Parry (Melbourne), Hannah Dunn and Alexia Hamilton (both Gold Coast) and Eastlake on-baller Najwa Allen (Adelaide) also selected.
Allen also played for SANFLW side Norwood this year, winning the league best and fairest, while Talia Radan is now at her third AFLW club in West Coast, but started her footy with Belconnen.
The numbers are a significant increase on recent years, with GWS – the only team in the state – traditionally having to scour the country to sign players. This year, NSW locals are being snapped up by other teams across the nation.
New West Coast forward Tarnee Tester may have played in the WAFLW this year but comes from Broken Hill, Giants key Sarah Halverson will be making the journey south from Newcastle, while Georgia Breward (Grafton) will be travelling north to Gold Coast.
Giants signings Lisa Steane, Georgia Garnett and Emily Goodsir all hail from the AFL Sydney competition, as does Brenna Tarrant, who chose to nominate for Victoria and was drafted by Melbourne.
Librarian: "I thought there was a snake or something..."— AFL Women's (@aflwomens) October 22, 2019
Friend: "No, she just got drafted into the AFLW!"
Studying at the library for her Year 12 HSC exams, @MelbourneAFLW's Pick #72, Brenna Tarrant from Western Sydney realised her long-held dreams this afternoon 🥺#AFLWDraft pic.twitter.com/g4dA4IyIUZ
Fellow new Dee Gabby Colvin hails from Victoria but spent time playing in Wagga Wagga, while Courtney Gum – who is from South Australia but played for years in the AFL Sydney competition – has come out of retirement and been drafted by Adelaide.
The trio of Tait Mackrill, Rebecca Privitelli and Lisa Whiteley decided to stay in Sydney and play for UNSW Eastern Suburbs after being delisted by the Giants, and their form has been rewarded by being redrafted.
Things you may have missed
- 'Second-chance' players who have previously been on an AFLW list: Hannah Dunn (now GC/previously GWS), Brittany Perry (GC/GWS), Holly Whitford (Rich/Coll), Tahni Nestor (NM/Carl), Laura Bailey (Rich/WB), Courtney Gum (Adel/GWS), Ebony O'Dea (Coll/GWS), Talia Radan (WC/Melb/Adel), Lauren Tesoriero (Rich/Coll)
- 100 players in all were drafted, with St Kilda and the Western Bulldogs both holding a list spot for a free agent, who must be signed by Friday night
- Twins Sarah (North Melbourne) and Gemma (Geelong) Wright were drafted within two picks of each other, at 32 and 34
- Five players were relisted by their clubs – Selina Priest (nee Goodman, BL), Jordan Membrey (Coll), Tait Mackrill, Rebecca Privitelli and Lisa Whiteley (all GWS) – with Priest having last played for the AFLW Lions in the 2017 Grand Final
- The 2019 draft was the second-biggest in the AFLW's short history, with the inaugural draft seeing 145 players selected
- Three clubs topped the tally of players drafted with five apiece: Hawthorn VFLW, Richmond VFLW and under-18 NAB League side Oakleigh Chargers
- West Coast's defensive recruit Kate Orme has worked at the club for five years in its communications department
- New Collingwood small forward Machaelia Roberts is the first woman to be drafted from Groote Eylandt, an island 50 kilometres off the coast of east Arnhem Land
- Courtney Gum was the oldest player drafted, coming out of her brief retirement at the age of 38 to take a spot on Adelaide's list