Hard work pays off for 'crazy Docker'

"CRAZY Docker" Sabreena Duffy shed a tear at the realisation of her AFL Women's dream, and she can't wait to pull on the purple guernsey to test herself against the competition's best next season.

The versatile defender was among eight Fremantle recruits at the NAB AFLW Draft on Tuesday, joining the club she has fanatically followed as a 15-year member.

Watching the draft unfold from her family home, where she has a life-sized Matthew Pavlich poster stuck to her bedroom door, Duffy was overwhelmed when her name was called out at pick 17.

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"I was quite emotional. I shed a tear. But it was so exciting, and all my hard work is finally paying off," Duffy said.

"(I'm a) crazy Docker. My dad got me into that from when I was little. I always idolised Pavlich and (David) Mundy, so it's a dream."

Duffy, who captained Western Australia's under-18s this year and was named All Australian at half-back, knows the jump to the elite level won't be easy.

But she will be a sponge around new teammates like Kara Donnellan, Hayley Miller and Evangeline Gooch, before testing her footy smarts against the best.

"I'm playing against a lot of older girls, but I like to think I'm quite knowledgeable, so we'll just see," Duffy said.

"I'm going to embrace it and soak up everything."

FAMILY FIRST New Blue happy to be close to home

First-year Dockers coach Trent Cooper was thrilled to add strong characters, not just talented players, to his squad via the draft.

Cooper hopes to lead the Dockers up the ladder after consecutive second-last finishes, and will revamp the team's playing style in 2019.

"We'll definitely change the way we have played in the past, or attempt to at least," he said.

"We had a big focus in the (mid-year) academy on skills, particularly picking the ball up cleanly and then using it well by foot.

"The game style itself won't be rocket science. It won't be too complicated, but we think if we can get those basics right that's where our improvement will come from."

LONG WAIT Crows recruit relishing her opportunity

Injuries have cruelled Fremantle in both AFLW seasons, particularly the unavailability of gun Kiara Bowers, who has struggled to overcome a right knee reconstruction.

"It's been a big problem for us. It's been a big focus on our medical side and trying to get that right," Cooper said.

"Kate Starr, our high performance manager, has come in and she's made a big difference in there, so we're quite confident we should be close to a fully fit list come round one and we should see some improvement out of that for sure.

"Bowers is the big one, obviously, she hasn't played a game in two years.

"She's not back in full training, but she's on a program where she should be right to play round one if everything goes well.

"I've only known Kiara a short time and there will be a lot of people very happy when she runs out on the ground because nobody works harder than her."

The AFLW fixture is set to be released on Friday as the competition moves to a conference system, but the season is likely to start on the first weekend in February. 

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