FOR CAPTAIN Kerryn Peterson, there was never any doubt about signing on for another two seasons at IKON Park.
Having led the Game Changers since 2019, Peterson has thoroughly enjoyed her 42 games in Navy Blue and is looking forward to building the future of the Club.
“I love playing for Carlton – it's something that I cherish every time I get to pull on the jumper and to be able to sign on for another couple of years is really exciting,” Peterson said.
“I'm pretty keen to be part of the next generation of what this Club is with our ‘W' team moving forward hopefully to really successful times.”
Constructing a young core group as a team, Peterson is keen on keeping a strong connection among the group and creating young leaders that can develop together for many years.
As one of the youngest lists in the competition, the captain is proud of the way the younger players have already stepped up and offered to help incoming players and draftees.
“To be part of the future really excites me,” she said.
“The group that we're putting together, it's really young and really exciting. It's hopefully going to be building a core that's going to take this group forward for the next 10 years and bring some success to the Club.
“To be part of building that is what excites me and keeps me wanting to show up and put that Navy Blue jumper on every time that we get to run out.”
Peterson also spoke highly of AFLW Senior Coach Daniel Harford, who has also led the group since 2019 and has signed on for another two seasons in the role.
Harford has always had a strong direction for the Club and according to Peterson, the Game Changers have a strong buy-in to his plan and the way that they will execute it going forward.
“It’s really exciting, not only from an individual perspective - ‘Harf’ and I get along really well - but for the whole group as well,” she said.
“Having that consistency makes it really easy and what it means is that we're able to build on what we've already worked on for the last couple of years and be able to move forward already having established that base.”
One benefit of having another season in 2022 is that the Club had an opportunity to get some early games into their younger group, giving them more experience to hit the ground running in season 7.0.
“What it allows is for our younger players to have another pre-season under their belt,” she said.
“We probably relied quite heavily on our younger players last year who may not have been as prepared as what they're going to be this year.
“For the [younger players] to come into the system in their second or third year, having played a number of games last year, we learnt a lot from the experiences of last year or even the losses that we had.”
Consistency is going to be key for the group heading forward, with Peterson adamant that keeping the group close and cohesive is her most important job, especially with all of the movement across the competition.
“I think the benefit of going through expansion this time is that we have been through it before,” she said.
“We know some of the things that worked well and some of the things that perhaps we could have done better as well in terms of being able to jell our group a lot faster.
“Bringing in new players and allowing them to be themselves within our system and just trying to get to know them as quickly as possible [is key].
“That's the advantage of having consistency through the leadership group, coaching staff and management.”