The AFLW has been growing stronger with each passing season, and this year, the competition has been set ablaze, proving to be the most exciting season yet.
The 10-round season has reached its midway point, and following a dynamic trade period in the offseason, the competition looks markedly different this year. Powerhouses Melbourne and Adelaide still lead the pack, but the squad changes throughout the league have fostered a more balanced and thrilling contest.
The Roos have emerged as one of the most exhilarating developments this season, currently holding the third spot on the ladder. Their sole loss thus far came in a closely contested match against the Brisbane Lions, who are in second place. The Roos feature two players with New Zealand heritage who are having exceptional seasons. Jasmine Garner, once again, stands out as a player who has earned a spot in 4 of the 5 Team of the Week lists so far. Tahlia Randall is also enjoying an outstanding season and is proving to be a tough challenge for opposing teams with her aerial prowess in the forward line.
The Gold Coast Suns have enjoyed a terrific start to the season, building on career-best performances from several players, including New Zealand heritage player Lucy Single. Lucy has consistently been one of the Suns’ top performers all season. She made significant strides in the offseason, and her season statistics far surpass her career average. At just 21 years old, she represents an exciting prospect for the league’s future.
After a blockbusting off season trade, Jesse Wardlaw moved from Brisbane to St Kilda, and although the club has had a rocky start to the season, they have gotten better and better every game, and have now won two on the trot. Jesse is playing a pivotal role in the success of the team, after a move to being a dual-position player for the Saints, playing in the ruck and the forward line, and had a huge performance in their round 5 game against the bulldogs where she kicked 3 goals and was involved with 3 more scoring opportunities, stating in a post match interview, “I’m only just getting started”.
There are 20 players with New Zealand heritage spread across 13 of the 18 teams in the competition, showcasing the abundant Kiwi talent playing crucial roles in the league. Currently, 10 of these players have their teams sitting in the top 8, while the other 10 players’ teams are still in contention for a finals push.
With only five rounds of the AFLW remaining and finals approaching rapidly, every game counts. Tune in to Sky Sport or download the AFLW official app to witness the action and find out who will be crowned premiers for 2023.