CARLTON has seen a show of faith from its AFLW playing group, with 13 Blues recommitting to the Club ahead of the upcoming 2021/22 season.
With four inaugural Blues featuring in that list, General Manager of Women’s Football Brett Munro is confident in the group’s commitment moving forward.
“It gives us some real confidence that the majority of our players believe in what we’re doing and where we’re going,” Munro said.
“We’re fortunate to have moved into a new facility, which we haven’t at this stage had a lot of time to spend in due to the COVID lockdown, but they can see what resources the Club is putting behind them.
“They’re believing in the structure of our program and our philosophy and our strategy of where we’re going as a team.
“It gives us great confidence: we’ve still got another week, so hopefully we’ll be able to add to that a little bit more.”
Carlton’s trade activity saw the Club bring in experienced former Giant Jess Dal Pos as well as a bevy of draft picks in a three-way trade that saw Tayla Harris, Chloe Dalton and Katie Loynes find new homes.
Having watched Dal Pos over a number of years, Munro was pleased to welcome the Victorian midfielder into the mix at IKON Park.
“Jess is actually someone that we’ve had on radar for a couple of years. She’s obviously a Darebin girl and played her football there, having really good connections with Elise O’Dea, Darcy Vescio, Maddy Guerin and a few others,” he said.
“She’s someone of great experience, great leadership and a really good person, so they’re some things that stand out.
“But then there’s her football capabilities as well, she’s a really versatile player. She can play inside mid, she can play wing, she can play half back, she can play in a shutdown role.
“So she’s a really good addition, someone that we chased and we were able to get her over the line. We’re really happy to have Jess on board.”
Upgrading the Blues’ draft hand through the Dal Pos trade as well as through the departure of Jess Hosking in a trade to Richmond, Carlton now holds three top-end selections in the Victorian draft pool.
Commencing the process of interviewing draftees, Munro is looking forward to the opportunity the Club has with its four picks in the first two rounds.
“Top 10 picks are gold: we have interviewed some of the draft pool already and are quite excited by some of those players,” he said.
“You look at the history of our club and top 10 picks in recent history, Maddy Prespakis, Lucy McEvoy, Grace Egan, Mimi Hill – that is our future.
“These girls that we bring in will also be a big part of that future.”