CARLTON AFLW List Manager Wayne Siekman is excited about what new recruits Katie Harrison and Joanne Doonan will bring to the Club.
Harrison and Doonan are the Club’s newest rookie signings, with Harrison hailing from a Rugby Sevens background and Doonan coming from Gaelic football to suit up for Carlton’s AFLW side.
Siekman expects Harrison to have a similar impact to Rugby Sevens gold medallists Chloe Dalton and Brooke Walker, who burst onto the scene last year in the Blues’ AFLW side.
“The game at the moment looks very much like an outside, running game and Katie is going to add that to our list,” Siekman said.
“She flew down from Sydney in August to meet with us and have a little bit of a skill session with Daniel Harford and myself.
“One of the things that was a bit bizarre was that generally when anyone is kicking the ball, it’s harder to kick on the run than stationary.
“But for her, it was easier to kick on the run than stationary, so for the role that she would play in our side, that’s an amazing talent to already have.
“Obviously with her Rugby Sevens background, her ball-handling skills are very good, her marking’s very good and she’s quite tall, a similar mould to Chloe.
“We’re going to see plenty of run and no doubt, she’ll have a very good presence in our football club next year.”
Thanks to everyone for the overwhelming support, delighted to be joining such a brilliant club #boundbyblue— Joanne Doonan (@JoanneDoonan) September 5, 2019
Exciting times-1st up All Ireland Final on the 15th Sept meet me&the rest of the @fermanaghladies team this Friday the 6th at the Bawnacre Centre from 7.30pm! https://t.co/vdG4vqrBjW
As for Doonan, Siekman has been impressed with her intent to improve and develop her skills since first meeting with the Blues.
Doonan is a known leader, having captained her Gaelic football side into the Grand Final, while her leadership qualities are already shining through.
“The week I signed as List Manager with the Club at the start of May, CrossCoders had a camp over in Ireland,” Siekman said.
“I was, most nights, watching the vision coming through... I viewed the talent and watched it all and there were probably two girls that stood out and Joanne was one of them.
“Athletically, she tested the best in terms of agility, the 20-metre sprint and the two-kilometre time trial.
“Overall, she was amazing in all those three so we’re getting a terrific athlete.
“She flew herself out, came to the Club and we did a skill session with her and the development and improvement in three months was amazing.
“She could be a player that’s well-recognised very quickly.”
In terms of positions, Siekman expects Harrison to play a similar role to Dalton in 2018, using her impressive running and marking skills on the wing.
As for Doonan, Bluebaggers can expect to see her play as a half-forward due to her elite endurance, speed, agility and similar role in Gaelic football.