Image by Joe Castro of AAP.
To tell you the truth, there would be a much more expansive article here, but there’s two reasons why not.
One of them is that I simply ran out of time because I wanted to do other things. Sue me, I don’t have bucketloads of sports journalism responsibilities upon me.
The second reason, and possibly the bigger one, is that I don’t actually know that much about women’s footy.
I mean, I’m able to name a few players. Steph Chiocci, Katie Brennan, Daisy Pearce, Moana Hope. Laura Attard, who (fun fact) teaches at my high school.
But those are the big names, the marquee stars. I could probably name more random Bulldogs players who won’t play more than five games this year than I could AFLW players who’ll do the same.
It has been kind of quick. According to Wikipedia, there have been just fourteen exhibition games between the first one in 2013 and the start of the main competition.
Most of these have involved Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs. These were the two major AFL-affiliated teams at the beginning. You’d think that they would have an advantage, considering it took until April last year before any of the other teams got a side.
The last game they had last year, which decided the Hampson-Hardeman Cup, was an all-star game, and was billed as such. For the players, it was the last hurrah before they went off to the club they were drafted at.
The best players in the match were almost all picked as marquee players: Hope for Collingwood, Ellie Blackburn for the Bulldogs, Tayla Harris for Brisbane, Darcy Vescio and Brianna Davey for Carlton. Chiocci, Brennan, Pearce, and Kara Donnellan are the captains for Collingwood, the Bulldogs, Melbourne, and Fremantle respectively.
Earlier this morning, at the bus stop before school, I told my friends that I’d be going to the football tonight. Some of the responses are unprintable. (Untypable?)
Despite all the worry about it, I think that this’ll be great, for several reasons:
- We get to have footy back at regional venues – Princes Park! Whitten Oval! Old football fans, rejoice!
- We get a 14% increase in the number of games, and 27 more players to support.
- Football gets to start in February. Proper football, not the preseason crap that isn’t even interesting now there’s no trophy to play for.
- It gives people like me more stats to play with.
- If you support a team that’s not in the competition this year, you get to see what it’s like to support someone else. (By the way, support the Dogs!)
- And, of course, it will be so much better for women, because not only will it increase the interest in the women’s game, but it will also give young players a goal to aim for.
Go away naysayers. I can’t wait.
Predicted ladder, although I’ll admit this is mostly guesswork:
- W Bulldogs
- GWS Giants