Ashanti Bush is an exciting top-age AFLW Academy member who has plenty of dangerous traits inside 50, knowing how to beat her opponent in numerous ways.
- Goal sense
- Footy IQ
- Clean hands
Ashanti Bush is the sole Northern Territory member of the AFL Women’s Academy. Boasting a lot of potential as a deep forward, Bush causes all sorts of headaches to opponents one-on-one inside 50 and has shown that she is more than capable taking on various sized opponents.
Standing at just 162cm, Bush plays taller than she is because of her smart positioning and recovery, either able to take the mark, or bring the ball to ground, then apply scoreboard pressure. She knows where the goals are, and showed that during the Thunder’s clash with GWV Rebels in the NAB League Girls, kicking two goals in as many minutes to win the game for her side.
Not a huge ball-winner, Bush is able to hit the scoreboard consistently, booting three goals in two games for Hawthorn VFL Women’s side in her two games, whilst kicking a goal in her sole match against Western Australia at the AFLW Under 19s Championships. Whilst she is pidgeonholed as that forward, Bush has all the traits that make her perfect for the role.
Like many forwards, Bush can have bursts within games to tear them apart, as well as quiet patches. Bridging the gap to improve her consistency will be a key for her going forward, and potentially even developing greater versatility up the field.
When purely looking at her ability inside forward 50, there is very little doubt she can consistently provide a target be it in the air or at ground level, and is quite nimble once the ball hits the deck, reading it well. With the Gold Coast Suns now aligned with the Northern Territory, the newest Queensland side would be keeping a close eye on Bush and her talents.
“The sole Northern Territory member of the AFL Women’s Academy, Bush has a lot of potential as a deep forward, causing all sorts of headaches to opponents one-on-one. She is smart with her positioning and recovery, either able to take the mark, or bring the ball to ground, then apply scoreboard pressure. She knows where the goals are, and showed that during the Thunder’s clash with GWV Rebels in the NAB League Girls, kicking two goals in as many minutes to win the game for her side. Not a huge ball-winner, Bush is able to hit the scoreboard consistently, already booting three goals in two games for Hawthorn VFL Women’s side in her two games, whilst kicking a goal in her sole match against Western Australia at the AFLW Under 19s Championships.” – Peter Williams via “2021 AFLW Draft Positional Analysis: Tall/Medium Forwards”
“Running out for the Thunder in the win against the GWV Rebels, Bush is a dangerous forward who has deceptive athleticism and a neat sidestep with power that can shrug off would-be tacklers. She was able to effectively drive the nail into the Rebels’ coffin in that game with a couple of goals in a minute, and is often too strong for quicker opponents or too quick for bigger opponents. A real nightmare to try and match up on, Bush is the sole NT AFL Women’s Academy member, and will add to a versatile and damaging forward line.” – Peter Williams via “2021 AFLW U19 Championships state preview: Allies”
“After a quieter first half, Bush came alive in the second, having multiple shots on goal and converting two in the space of a minute in the fourth quarter. After missing a set shot late in the third term, Bush used the outside of the boot to snap a classy goal eight and a half minutes into the last quarter, then the next inside 50 a minute later saw her mark one-on-one with really strong hands and convert with relative ease 20m out. She almost had a third goal moments later working her opponent under the ball and running towards goal but just slipped at the crucial moment and could not get boot to ball.” – Peter Williams via “Top Performers: NAB League Girls – Round 8”
AFLW U19 Championships