EXPLAINER: How the new-look AFLW Draft will work in 2020


THE NAB AFL Women's Draft will be a slightly different affair to those held in the past, but at the end of the night, at least 50 excited players will be added to an AFLW list.

Read on to find out just how the draft will work in this most unconventional of years, as well as some background information on the rules surrounding it. 

When is it?

Better put this in your diary! It all goes down on Tuesday, October 6 at 7pm AEDT, the first time the NAB AFLW Draft has been held in the evening.


AWST: 4pm – WA
ACST: 5.30pm – NT
AEST: 6pm – QLD
ACDT: 6.30pm - SA 
AEDT (local): 7pm - VIC, NSW, TAS, ACT

How can I see it?

All the action will be streamed through womens.afl, the AFLW Official App and Facebook Live.

How will the draft work under COVID-19 restrictions?

Clubs will be on a call in a central location (the AFL Review Centre, or ARC), but each pick will be brought live to the public through a studio show. The AFL's head of women's football, Nicole Livingstone, will announce the first round, with subsequent picks to be communicated by host Nat Edwards. 

AFL head of women's football Nicole Livingstone

What picks does my team have?

Each team has at least three selections in the draft. You can find the current draft order here

How was the draft order determined?

A composite ladder was created out of the two conferences, with Richmond given pick No.1 for finishing last overall, and moving backwards from there. A lot of changes were then made to the draft order through the AFLW Sign and Trade Period in August.

How does the state-based draft work?

As the AFLW is not yet a full-time competition, restrictions have been put in place so players don't have to move across the country if they don't wish to. Players nominate for the state in which they want to be drafted. If a player is not selected in the draft, and a club from another state still has an available spot, that club can approach the player in question to see if they're interested in moving. 

DRAFT PROFILES Find out more about 2020's leading prospects

Draft Prospect: Ellie McKenzie

00:52 Sep 2. 2020. 2:29 PM

Northern Knights gun shows why she's one to watch

What about the Northern Territory and Tasmania?

Gold Coast and North Melbourne have alliances with the Northern Territory and Tasmania respectively, although players from those regions do not necessarily have to nominate for those particular draft pools.

Given COVID-19 restrictions around the country, how have scouts looked for talent this year?

Some semblance of a state league season has been played in every state except Victoria this year, even if there have been long suspended periods in the middle. It's been a tougher proposition for Victorian clubs. There were three rounds of the NAB League Girls played at the start of the year, but other than that, clubs are relying on information they have gleaned from last year, as well as conversations with players' coaches.

Have I completely overlooked the NAB AFLW Under-18 championships?

Due to travel restrictions this year, the NAB AFLW Under-18 Championships usually scheduled for July were reworked into state NAB AFLW All Star matches, with one game taking place in Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, the Northern Territory and Western Australia. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, games were unable to be played in Victoria and NSW.

U18 ALL-STARS Check out the full fixture and results

Tahlita Buethke kicks the ball during the SA NAB AFLW All-Stars game in September. Picture: AFL Photos

What happened to the NAB AFLW Draft Combine?

Like the championships, the Combine has been altered this year to a state-based affair. Once again, Victoria has not been able to hold testing, but players have been asked to record a 2km time trial through the Strava app. Interviews between clubs and draft hopefuls have been conducted via video calls.

FUTURE STARS Prospects named for state Combines

Who should my team draft?

That's a question for the list managers! But if you're interested in finding out about some of this year's top prospects, click through to our hub.

Ellie McKenzie flies for a mark. Picture: AFL Photos

I'm more interested in the stories behind prospective draftees. Where can I find some?

Players from around the country have been profiled on womens.afl and the AFLW Official App. Read about possible No.1 pick Ellie McKenzie, the meteoric rise of Western Australia's Shanae Davison or the tough road Steph Williams has travelled, among others.

How do father-daughter selections work?

Players are able to be claimed if their father had played at least one game for the same club through a nomination and bidding process. If a bid is placed on a father-daughter nominee by a rival club, the first club must match with its next selection after that bid, if it wishes to draft the player. Successful bids will be announced before the draft, with the pick used not to be revealed until draft night. Collingwood and St Kilda are expected to draft Tarni Brown (daughter of Gavin) and Alice Burke (daughter of Nathan) through this process.

Tarni Brown in action for the Eastern Ranges. Picture: AFL Photos

The NAB AFLW Draft will be live on womens.afl and the AFLW Official App from 7pm AEDT on Tuesday, October 6