‘If I had to become Prime Minister to change the rules’: Katherine Smith’s AFL dream

This article was first written for and published by the Roar.

Katherine Smith was only a little girl when she declared to her parents that she wanted to be the Prime Minister of Australia.

“I have always wanted to play AFL at the elite level,” says Smith.

But when Smith was growing up, AFL was a sport associated with men and at that point, only men were competing at the elite level.

Alyce Parker on becoming a leader

This article was first written for and published by Siren Sport.

Recently, the GWS Giants AFLW team named its new-look leadership group for the 2022 season.

Whilst Alicia Eva will continue in her role as captain for a third year, she will have some new faces supporting her including Chloe Dalton, Alyce Parker and Nicola Barr. Cora Staunton and Pepa Randall have maintained their sports.

All five players will hold the role of vice-captain for the GIANTS this season.

At just 21 and the first person at the club to become a dual All-Australian and winner of the Gabrielle Trainor Medal, Parker is one of the new faces to the leadership group. But Parker has been aspiring to be part of this group for many years.

Alicia Eva’s coaching star continues to rise

This article was first written for and published by the Roar

Over the last five years, women’s sport has become increasingly prominent.

In most of our professional sporting codes, women are visible everywhere you turn; as players, spectators, volunteers, administrators, media commentators and as officials.

But despite all the change over the last five years, there’s still plenty of work to do.

Louise Stephenson: a woman of great courage

This article was first written for and published by Siren Sport

GWS Giants utility Louise Stephenson is a woman of great courage.

Stephenson is preparing for her fifth year representing the GWS Giants in the AFLW and is hoping to take the field from round three onwards. While Stephenson, just like her teammates, loves playing footy, right now playing AFLW is not a full-time professional job. For Stephenson and her teammates, that means juggling footy training and all other footy commitments with other parts of life including study, family and employment.

Most women who pursue a career as an elite athlete, do so with the knowledge that they will not be paid as full-time professional athletes, but do so anyway. They do it because they love it and often make tremendous sacrifices for this love of their sport. For me, that is the very definition of courage.

For Stephenson, not only is she dreaming of the day when playing in the AFLW is a full-time job, but after an intensive 14 weeks, she has also recently been promoted to a Firefighter at Fire and Rescue NSW. This is a job which also takes tremendous courage and compassion as we saw last year during the devastating bushfires which wreaked havoc across the country and particularly NSW.

Do the Richmond Tigers really care about women’s footy? I’m not so sure

This post was first written for and published by the Roar.

n 2017 when it was announced by the AFL that the Richmond Tigers would be granted an AFLW licence to enter the competition in 2020, CEO Brendon Gale said the following:

“It is fantastic news for the club, our members and supporters and all our stakeholders. We were disappointed that we were not part of the inaugural AFLW season, but we have continued to work hard to promote female football and support participation pathways.”

Giants ready for first ‘stand tall’ game

This article was first written for and published by the Roar.

For the GWS Giants, their win against the West Coast Eagles in the AFLW last weekend may have been the best in their history. The margin of 28 points certainly suggests so.

But after a disappointing loss to North Melbourne the week before, for Bec Beeson and the rest of her Giants teammates, it was important to bounce back strongly.

“I thought our connection on the field and being able to share the ball around was a real stand out,” says Beeson.

Happy, healthy Hatchard: A key to the Crows’ success

This article was first written and published for The Roar

Coming into AFLW season four, the Adelaide Crows were the hunted. After winning their second title in just three years in 2019, the club had certainly proven themselves as one of the most dominant teams in the competition.

However, after a couple of injuries sustained during the off-season, including to star midfielder Erin Phillips as well as Chloe Scheer and Deni Varnhagen, some doubt was cast over the squad’s ability to go back to back, particularly after their shock loss to the Brisbane Lions in Round 1.

10 things we learned from AFLW Round One

This story was first written by Kristy Williams.

The fourth instalment of AFLW kicked off at Ikon Park in Carlton on Friday night, and the standard just gets better and better each year! It promises to be the most even season the league has seen, with a least eight sides having legitimate Premiership aspirations.

There were a couple of surprises, weather affected games and some scintillating passages of play, so what did we learn from the opening round of AFLW 2019?

AFLW Round 1: Carlton Blues v Richmond Tigers

This piece was written by Kristy Williams.

An outstanding blue-collar performance from Carlton led to a comprehensive 34-point victory over league newcomers, Richmond, in the AFLW season opener at Ikon Park on Friday night.

With a vocal crowd of 15,337 watching on, last year’s runners-up, the Blues, put on a contested ball clinic despite the Tigers midfield throwing themselves with reckless abandon at the Sherrin.