AFLW Season 7 Glass Half Full/Empty: Port Adelaide

IN a new approach to the AFL Women’s end of season reviews, Rookie Me Central casts both a glass half full and half empty lens over each side’s campaigns.

Next under the microscope is Port Adelaide, who had their moments this season, but it did not always click for them.


Hannah Ewings and Abbey Dowrick

Two of Port’s younger stars, Hannah Ewings and Abbey Dowrick, really shone for the Power this season. In what was ultimately a tough year for the fledgling side, these two were shining lights that Power coaches and fans can really be proud of. They may also form the cornerstones of any sustained future success the team has.

Good game style

The game style that mentor Lauren Arnell and her fellow coaches have got going is a good one, they just did not quite have the resources there this season to make things really happen.

Quick ball movement is always positive and the strong midfield was there, but the Power just lacked the firepower up forward to really execute the style.

Strong South Australian talent

One thing many non South Australians do not realise is the emerging female talent soon to be available in the state.

Port was able to access much of this talent this year with the likes of Ewings really shining this year, and that talent pool is only going to keep growing. As a result, Port will almost inevitably get so much stronger.

Alongside the much talked about Lauren Young, the likes of Shineah Goody, Matilda Scholz, Piper Window and Molly Brooksby are all top-age options in the post Season 8 draft. Although they will not be available for Port ahead of next season, there is that light at the end of the tunnel for Port.


Erin’s form?

Before Season 7, much of the talk surrounding Port was the move of Erin Phillips and how that was going to be such a boost to the young Power side.

However, that’s not really how things eventuated. She did not kick any goals this season, so the Power will certainly be hoping she can turn things around in Season 8 and lift the team on-field as she does off it.

Midfield depth

Ewings and Dowrick may be top tier talent and emerged as quite the stars in Season 7, but they cannot do it all on their own in the midfield.

Especially with Phillips’ ageing and star power diminishing, they need to find some other talent of Ewings and Dowrick’s quality to help support her in that midfield. There is plenty of talent coming through, but unfortunately will not be available until Season 9 due to the change in the draft rules ahead of Season 8, so the question is what do they do in the mean time to close that gap.


Another issue that Port faced this year was the fitness and late fades in games. Particularly early in the season, the Power developed a bit of a habit of conceding a lot of free kicks in the fourth quarter of matches, which they just cannot afford to do moving forward if they wish to be competitive.


Overall, it was a bit of an up and down year for the Power. The foundations are there for a team and they could have potentially won several more games than they did, but they still have plenty to work on ahead of next season.

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