In the upcoming season of AFL Womens, players from Gippsland are now more present than ever.
Here is a list of players to keep an eye on:
TAYLA STAHL – RICHMOND
Previously a Victorian representative in netball at an Under 18’s level, the goal kicking machine from Bass Coast Breakers saw her dominate the SEWF goal kicking table in 2018 with 61 goals from 12 matches and help secure a premiership for the Breakers. She also managed a best & fairest award as well.
Picked up by the Richmond VFLW side in 2019, Stahl kicked 6 goals in Round 1 and was drafted by Richmond’s AFLW side immediately afterwards via the expansion side draft rule. She kicked 19 goals in 14 games in 2019 and was named in the forward pocket of the VFLW team of the year.
In 2020, Stahl kicked 1 goal from 4 games and averaged 8 disposals & 4 tackles a game.
TYLA HANKS – MELBOURNE
A highly fancied draft prospect in her final year with Gippsland Power after being named in the TAC Cup Under 18 All Australian side, Hanks was picked up by Melbourne with pick 6 in the 2018 AFLW National Draft.
Hanks has played all 14 games over two seasons since being drafted. In 2020, she averaged 10.4 disposals and 4.7 tackles a game.
DARCY GUTTRIDGE – ST KILDA
A former Vic Country captain, Guttridge was drafted by Collingwood at pick 9 in the 2017 AFLW National Draft.
Due to a broken collarbone that kept her out of the 2018 season, Guttridge didn’t make her AFLW debut until 2019, where she managed 3 games before deciding to sign with new expansion team St Kilda.
In 2020, she managed 5 out of a 7 possible games, kicking 2 goals for the season and averaging 5.4 disposals a game.
CASEY SHERRIFF – MELBOURNE
Originally picked up a replacement player for Daisy Pearce as a category B rookie in the 2019 season, the athletic rebounding defender was elevated from the Casey VFLW side.
Sherriff had a breakout debut season in 2020, playing all 7 games. She kicked 2 goals for the season and averaged 8.4 disposals & 3.4 tackles a game.
MEGAN FITZSIMON – MELBOURNE
Selected at pick 35 in the 2020 draft, Fitzsimon is an explosive footballer who can play through the middle and up forward, and she knows how to kick a goal.
In her two games for Gippsland Power in 2020, she averaged 19.5 disposals and 6 tackles a game.
HOLLY WHITFORD – RICHMOND
ON LONG TERM INJURY LIST FOR 2021 – LIKELY TO MISS THE ENTIRE SEASON
Drafted at pick 4 in the AFLW 2017 rookie draft, Whitford managed four games over two seasons before being delisted in April 2019.
A strong season with Melbourne Uni in the 2019 VFLW season strengthened her credentials and saw her picked up by Richmond at pick 43 in the 2019 AFLW National Draft.
The AFLW 2021 season begins on Thursday January 28th, 2021
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