2023 AFLW Draft Positional Analysis: Small-general defenders

AS the 2023 AFL Women’s Draft edges closer, we take a look at some of the key players who could shape the draft by each position. This article will hone in on the small to general defenders who play a variety of roles from offensive running types to defensive lockdown roles


Amber Schutte (Gippsland Power / Victoria)
13/12/2005 | 171cm | Victoria

In an even positional group, our top pick is Gippsland speedster Amber Schutte who is ranked inside the top 40 on our Power Rankings. A raw talent, Schutte has a thumping kick and great athleticism, having played off half-back for the Power and Vic Country. She had a sensational national carnival to thrust her name into the draft spotlight, with impressive upside for the future as well.


Lara Hausegger (Oakleigh Chargers / Vic Metro)
03/08/2005 | 170cm | National

There are quite a few in this group who could have slotted into this role, but Hausegger gets the nod as a player who can be tasked with both offensive and defensive roles. Able to compete one-on-one well, Hausegger moves through traffic nicely and can provide run and carry to go with her defensive accountability. The Oakleigh Chargers skipper comes with a high character to-boot.


Indiana Williams (Lions Academy / Queensland)
12/06/2005 | 173cm | National

Really stepping up to play a selfless role this year, Williams did not have stats that jumped off the page, but was very strong one-on-one and able to beat her opponents more often than not. Though she has played up forward before, Williams settled into defence and showed her strength, as well as elite endurance at the Draft Combine, showing some potential to further develop.


Ava Campbell (Eastern Ranges / Vic Metro)
29/07/2005 | 173cm | National

The Eastern Ranges skipper is another one who can be defensively accountable, but does her best work running off half-back. She knows how to accumulate the ball and drive it forward every chance she gets. Putting her body on the line consistently, Campbell’s bread and butter comes in her intercept game and she plays a style that helps gain metres.


Serina Baukes (Swans Academy / NSW-ACT)
19/08/2005 | 171cm | New South Wales

A strong defensive type who can lockdown on taller opponents, Baukes has a powerful kick and is capable of providing some rebound out of the back 50. Though slightly undersized compared to key position players, Baukes matches up well and is ultra-competitive.

T’Sharni Graham (Palmerston Magpies / Northern Territory)
28/10/2005 | 170cm | National

A natural leader, the 18-year-old is already a co-captain at Palmerston Magpies and played a role in defence for the Allies this year She moves well and is solid across the board with clean hands and can play both offensive and defensive roles. One who has midfield potential at higher levels.

Marnie Robinson (Swans Academy / NSW-ACT)
08/06/2005 | 172cm | National

The Allies MVP had a wonderful national carnival and kept her name on draft boards. She has nominated nationally and could fill an important role in defence, with her medium height allowing her to play on talls and smalls. Robinson provides nice rebound out of defence to keep the ball moving in transition.

Jasmine Shepherd (Sandringham Dragons / Vic Metro)
07/10/2005 | 172cm | National

A clever and strong medium defender, Shepherd has great natural footballing ability. Though she does not have the best athleticism, her footy IQ and technique by hand or foot stands out, and the fact she can be an offensive runner or a lockdown defender.

Johanna Sunderland (Geelong Falcons / Vic Country)
14/07/2005 | 165cm | National

A late inclusion to the AFLW Draft Combine, Sunderland had a strong national carnival where she slotted into defence. Reliable and consistent for Geelong Falcons, Sunderland was great one-on-one as well as her traditional rebounding from the kickout.

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