2022 WAFLW club preview: South Fremantle

AFTER two developmental years – yet to be rewarded in the ‘wins’ column – South Fremantle has stocked up on youth for the 2022 West Australian Football League (WAFL) Women’s season. The Bulldogs are yet to win a game from their two seasons, but with a couple of players drafted – Mim Strom and Makaela Tuhakaraina – and a couple of top-end AFLW Academy members this year, the reigning wooden spooners are surely on the rise.

Having seen the speedy Tuhakaraina join Strom at the Dockers in last year’s draft and maintain her spot at the elite level, South Fremantle will look to the next crop of young players coming through. There is no shortage of those players on the Bulldogs list, with 29 of its 49-player 2022 group born this century. Headlining that crop is a couple of AFLW Academy members in Lauren Wakfer and Ashleigh Reidy.

Wakfer is the top ruck in the AFLW Draft this year, with the South Fremantle tall coming on in leaps and bounds last season. She earned state representative duties and shared the ruck role with eventual West Coast draftee Sarah Lakay at the AFLW Under 19 Championships. Reidy caught attention with her eye-catching flair and balance of offensive and defensive pressure inside 50, able to lock it in, or create scoring opportunities. Though the Bulldogs did struggle forward of centre in the 2021 WAFLW season, she will be a player who can further enhance her stocks with a good year.

Two other players named in the 2022 West Australian State Academy Under 18s squad are Tanika Bradley and Aaliyah Ugle. The latter is an over-age talent, whilst the former turns 18 this year. Outside of them, there is the likes of fellow over-agers in Hunter Cronin and Poppy Stockwell who performed strongly for the Bulldogs at League level.

From a more experienced point of view, former NT Thunder player Tahlia Holtze leads by example on the field. She, along with Liusaidh Gilchrist and Pia Durk certainly impressed, with Lauren Vecchio one of the more consistent players in the WAFL competition. Tall Ella Ward was another who continued to establish herself, with the Bulldogs a very even side across the board.


Round 1: vs. West Perth
Round 2: @ Peel Thunder
Round 3: vs. Subiaco
Round 4: Bye
Round 5: vs. Claremont
Round 6: @ East Fremantle
Round 7: Swan Districts
Round 8: vs. Subiaco
Round 9: @ West Perth
Round 10: Bye
Round 11: @ Subiaco
Round 12: @ West Perth
Round 13: vs. Peel Thunder
Round 14: @ Claremont
Round 15: @ Swan Districts
Round 16: Bye
Round 17: vs. East Fremantle

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