Kiwis in the AFL: Tall Lion shines in 2020 and sets the standard for young aspiring footballers

Jesse Tawhiao-Wardlaw has had an unbelievable second AFLW season with the Brisbane Lions.


The tall forward dominated this year in the AFLW, helping Brisbane to yet another finals series.

The 20-year-old who is orgiinally from Ashburton, thrived in the forward line where she was dangerous in front of goal for the opposition. She received a rising star nomination in round 2 in 2020 after a standout performance in the Lions comeback win against the Cats in Geelong.

Drafted to the Lion with the 61st pick in the 2018 draft, she made her debut in round 1 of the 2019 season. She has held her spot in the side with her marking ability and goal sense when in the forward line. She made the 2020 All Australian Squad after her outstanding season.

Her mother was born in Auckland and her father is from Hamilton.

Jesse continues to inspire young Aussie and Kiwi kids to train hard and put their best foot forwards to achieve their goal. Still so new to the elite level, the number 30 has a lot of potential to become one of the greats of the game and lead the way for the mighty Brisbane Lions as they aim for their maiden premiership.

If given the chance in the future, Jesse said “I would love to represent my country, I’m sure that’s every athletes dream. If I had the opportunity, I would take it and make my family proud.”

  • Born 13 January 2000
  • Drafted with pick 61 in 2018
  • Debuted round 1 2019
  • 14 AFLW games & 10 goals
  • 2020 All Australian Squad