AFLW Season 7 Glass Half Full/Empty: St Kilda

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 up in the series it is St Kilda, who produced some promising early-season form before petering out of the top eight race.


Never giving up

Despite the frustrating nature how Season 7 eventuated, one thing that the Saints can be credit for is their resilience, and how they never gave up across four quarters.

There is no more perfect example of this than in their Round 3 clash against Melbourne.

After conceding the first six goals of the game, the Saints regrouped and kept Melbourne goalless for the remainder of the match.

Stingy defence

The best area of St Kilda’s game is its defence, boasting rocks in the form of Bianca Jakobsson and Clara Fitzpatrick down there, complimented with the likes of Hannah Priest and Lucy Burke.

Jakobsson is arguably racing towards her second club best and fairest in a calendar year, as the star defender earned a spot in the All Australian Squad after a magnificent season.

Key players returning

St Kilda saw key players return in Season 7 and have even more set to return in 2023.

Fitzpatrick and Georgia Patrikios made their way back into the fold, and while Patrikios was arguably not at her prolific best, she will hopefully return to that level in the coming seasons as she adjusts again to the rigours of AFLW football.

2023 will also see the return of Tyanna Smith into the midfield, and the Saints will finally get to utilise Grace Kelly after injury saw her unable to take the field in her first year at the club.


Who’s developed?

Season 7 was St Kilda’s fourth in the competition, and there are some serious questions about who has really improved in that time.

If you take a look at the other expansion clubs that came into the competition the same year St Kilda did, one made finals this year while another has made finals in the past. St Kilda, on the other hand, has not looked close to doing so.

Admittedly, a range of injuries have impacted the development of St Kilda’s midfielders and forwards, but the improvement in the Saints’ game has been somewhat of a slow burn.

Future and form of Georgia Patrikios

This one is more a wait and see, but it is unclear how much of an effect Patrikios’ season will have on the young midfielder.

After spending time on the sidelines, it was clear she wasn’t at her best this time around, but is it a case of her easing back into the level, or has she lost that skill for good? Time will tell.


So although Season 7 was certainly a frustrating one for the Saints, there were still plenty of positives to take out of the year for those from Moorabbin. The improvement has been steady, and having shown glimpses of being a side which can win games, more points are surely on the Saintly horizon.

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