Team of the Week: AFLW – Round 1

THERE were many highlights across the board in an entertaining opening round of AFLW. Promising debutants and experienced superstars showcased their talent, and we kept our eye on all of them. Each week, we will compile the AFL Draft Central Team of the Week, where the best 22 players of the round get a spot, while others may be unlucky to miss out. AFLW Round 1 Rising Star nominee, Chloe Molloy entered the week with no experience on the big stage. But her lack of experience did not faze the Diamond Creek junior, who gained seven coaches’ votes in Friday night’s match against Carlton. The debutant’s 20 disposals meant she was a certainty to feature in the AFL Draft Central Team of the Week. Brisbane and GWS featured prominently in this week’s best 22, with four players included from each side. Melbourne and the Bulldogs are also well represented, with three players from each side included in the team. On the contrary, Collingwood and Adelaide only have one representative each, and Fremantle has none. Brisbane’s Sabrina Frederick-Traub and Bulldogs midfielder, Ellie Blackburn were locks in the Team of the Week, with best-on-ground performances in their respective matches. Frederick-Traub made the most of having reign inside forward 50 with 10 contested marks, evidently not fazed by Tayla Harris’ move to Carlton in the offseason. Similarly, with a competition-high 23 possessions, Blackburn dominated the middle of the ground in her side’s battle against the Dockers. The biggest omission from the Team of the Week was South Adelaide recruit, Courtney Gum. The Giants took a risk by recruiting her at 36 years of age, but the midfielder restored the faith after a solid debut. She racked up 17 disposals and four clearances for the Giants, but could not break into a star-studded Team of the Week. FB: Kate Lutkins (Bris), Chloe Molloy (Coll), Brianna Davey (Carl) HB: Danielle Hardiman (Carl), Leah Kaslar (Bris), Chelsea Randall (Adel) C: Ellie Blackburn (WB) HF: Phoebe McWilliams (GWS), Sabrina Frederick-Traub (Bris), Richelle Cranston (Melb) FF: Katie Brennan (WB), Tayla Harris (Carl), Jess Wuetschner (Bris) R: Erin McKinnon (GWS), Daisy Pearce (Melb), Emma Kearney (WB) I/C: Amy Lavell (Frem), Jamie Stanton (Bris), Jacinda Barclay (GWS), Elise O’Dea (Melb), Amanda Farrugia (GWS), Gabriella Pound (Carl)

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