2023 AFLW Draft State-by-State analysis: South Australia

SOUTH Australia has been the dominant state for on-field success over the last couple of years, and the Croweaters have plenty of talent ready to step up to the elite level. While many of their young AFLW Draft hopefuls have nominated nationally, or have been pre-listed, there are still some exclusive names available to Adelaide and Port Adelaide.


Piper Window is our top pick remaining in this year’s AFLW Draft, and after much conjecture over which way she would nominate, the Glenelg star opted to remain at home, essentially allowing safe passage to join Port Adelaide. The Power hold Pick 4, and barring any huge trades from Adelaide, have prime position on the SANFL Women’s League Best and Fairest winner. Her athleticism, power, contested work and impact is just elite, and while her kicking is the main area to improve, just above every other area is a massive tick.

Brooke Boileau is the other Croweater to nominate her state only, and is set to be the one that Adelaide turns to barring any major trade moves. An inside midfielder who had an ultra-consistent year, Boileau joins a side that is always on the cusp of success with plenty of depth in midfield that she will look to challenge. Very good on the inside, Boileau is clean by hand and a fierce tackler, while improving her offensive impact this year and taking her game to another level.


  • Georgina Birchall (Norwood)
  • Grace Whittaker (Norwood)
  • Lily Whitcombe (Sturt)

Just one of the three nominations played for South Australia at the national championships, with defender Lily Whitcombe a regular feature over the past two carnivals. Not a huge production player, Whitcombe is strong one-on-one and makes good decisions with ball-in-hand, often playing a lockdown role in defence.

Grace Whittaker is a Northern Territory talent who moved to Norwood this season, and has played with the Allies at the national carnival. Able to play in any area of the ground, she is a good size, impressive overhead and athletic across the ground. Her Norwood teammate Georgina Birchall is the third player to nominate state and she is an over-age member of the 2024 State Academy.


  • Emily Bartsch (Norwood)
  • Madison Bennett (Glenelg)
  • Sarah Branford (Norwood)
  • Alana Lishmund (Norwood)
  • Georgia Madigan (Central District)
  • Alex Pearce (Sturt)
  • Brianna Walling (WWT Eagles)
  • Sophie Zuill (WWT Eagles)

The mature-age options nominating for South Australia include Central District premiership defender Georgia Madigan and 2022 SANFL Women’s leading goalkicker Alana Lishmund. Madigan took her game to another level in 2023 to be one of the most consistent defenders league-wide, while Lishmund had an interrupted season due to injury but has class and an ability to play on all three lines.

Norwood defender Emily Bartsch has been a draft bolter this season, stepping up to League level and fitting in seamlessly. She might need another year at the level, but has draftable traits. Her Redlegs teammate Sarah Branford is a wonderfully skilled footballer with great footy IQ, and though small, packs a punch and can play just about anywhere.

Sturt ruck Alex Pearce has had a couple of really strong seasons at SANFL Women’s level, and would be an immediate relief for one of the clubs needing a tall, while Glenelg tackling machine Madison Bennett and Eagles duo Brianna Walling and Sophie Zuill round out the nominees. Zuill has long been a consistent midfielder for Woodville-West Torrens, while Walling was a rookie with Adelaide, playing a season there but did not crack in for a game.

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