Season 7 Expansion Side list analysis: Port Adelaide
SEASON 7 of the AFLW is not too far away, and season seven will see four new teams come into the competition to finally see the AFLW have all 18 teams.
We are going to take a deep dive into each of the new clubs’ inaugural lists and see how they might stack up in their inaugural season.
Today it is Port Adelaide under the microscope.
Please note that these calculations have all been done with Hannah Ewings included as both a midfielder and a forward, as she is expected ply her trade 50 per cent of the time each in both positions.
List make-up by position
As any good side should, there is a pretty even split across the positions. There are eight defenders, three rucks, eight midfielders (including Ewings) and 12 forwards (including Ewings). Although the split is slightly skewed towards the forwards, a few of them can swing into the midfield if need be, including Ewings and Erin Phillips.
Defenders – young and not a whole lot of experience
Take one look at Port Adelaide’s defensive group and you will see that is very young and does not have a whole lot of experience at AFLW level.
The average age of the group is 20.8, and the average number of games of experience is 10.1. Now that games figure may seem high considering how short the AFLW seasons are, but it is not when you realise that five of the eight have zero games to their name and the vast majority of the experience comes from one player.
That player is Angela Foley, who is the outlier of the group in both age and experience, so it will be no surprise if she takes quite the leadership role amongst this group this season.
Midfielders – good even split of ages and experiences
Unlike the defenders, Port Adelaide’s midfielders are a bit more evenly spread in terms of ages and players with AFLW experience. The average age of a Port midfielder is 21.75 while the average number of games is 14.1.
Four players have AFLW experience and four do not. The four who do are all over 20, while the four who do not are all teenagers. Among this group though is a former AFLW captain in Hannah Dunn, and a multiple premiership winner in Justine Mules, so the guiding figures are certainly there to help the younger faces.
Rucks – older yet inexperienced
Taking a look at Port’s ruck stock for this season, and one thing is clear – they are old compared to much of Port’s list, and there is not a whole lot of experience among the trio. The average age of the trio is 26.6, and although the average number of games of experience is 3.6, there is in fact only one of them with any experience – former Lion Maria Moloney.
Elizabeth McGrath has plenty of VFLW experience, but that is a whole different kettle of fish from AFLW. Olivia Levicki has also been included as a ruck, because although it is not official what role she will play yet, it appears she is being trained to become a ruck.
Forwards – short in stature, but not in number or experience
By far the largest portion of Port’s list, it sure is going to be a competition for spots in this forward line. On average the Port forward line is not overly tall (unlike the Essendon forward line analysed yesterday), but what they lack in height they certainly make up for in experience.
Lead by one of the greatest to ever play in the league in Phillips (who is expected to play more forward than midfield for her new side), they also have several strong marking targets in the likes of Gemma Houghton and Brittany Perry, which they built their forward line structure around. All three will present daunting challenges for opposition defenders, and then throw in the dangerously quick Kate Surman to the mix, and that is certainly a challenge.
PORT ADELAIDE SQUAD SEASON 7
Alexandra Ballard, Ella Boag, Amelie Borg, Laquoiya Cockatoo-Motlap, Litonya Cockatoo-Motlap, Jade De Melo, Tessa Doumanis, Abbey Dowrick, Hannah Dunn, Yasmin Duursma, Hannah Ewings, Angela Foley, Sarah Goodwin, Jade Halfpenny, Cheyenne Hammond, Gemma Houghton, Lily Johnson, Olivia Levicki, Maggie Maclachlan, Elizabeth McGrath, Maria Moloney, Justine Mules, Ebony O’Dea, Brittany Perry, Erin Phillips, Kate Surman, Sachi Syme, Indy Tahau, Julia Teakle, Jacqueline Yorston