PREVIEW | 2024 Coates Talent League Girls: Tasmania Devils

TASMANIA has had its fair share of Aussie rules related headlines recently and now the Devils will kick off their 2024 Coates Talent League Girls campaign at home on Sunday. With the release of the AFL moniker matching their junior pathway nickname and the release of the first jumper, the girls from the Apple Isle will be looking to defend the island when reigning premiers Oakleigh Chargers come to town.

In this preview, we take a look at some of the players to watch under brand new coach Jess Wuetschner who returns home after an outstanding career in the AFL Women’s with Brisbane and Essendon.


Mackenzie Williams (Medium Defender)
26/06/2006 | 171cm

Williams has been around the pathway for a number of years now, representing the Under 18s Allies as a 15-year-old, a very rare achievement. Strong overhead and one-on-one, Williams is a high production player with a booming kick. Her consistency over the last three seasons has been a highlight, and though not quite key position height, often takes on the talls, while being able to run off and provide rebound from defence.

Sophie Strong (Midfielder/Forward)
17/10/2006 | 166cm

Enjoying a sizzling second half of the season last year, Strong was deservedly a late inclusion to the Under 17s Futures game having shown her athletic gifts for the Devils at Talent League level. She moves well, can use the ball effectively, and roll between midfield and half-forward to have a serious impact on games. One player who does not need a lot of touches to do damage.

Lucy Thompson (Medium Forward)
14/06/2006 | 170cm

Similar to Williams but up the other end, Thompson is just below that key position height, but has strong hands and is not afraid to compete against bigger bodies. A focal point inside 50, Thompson booted eight goals from 11 games last season and like Strong, built form over the course of the year. She was able to step up and play in the Under 17s Futures match where she held her own in front of goal.

Meg Harrison (Wing/Utility)
03/11/2006 | 166cm

The rock solid midfielder is a well-balanced player who predominantly played on the wing last season, covering the ground well, while developing an inside game. With Candice Belbin now departing, Harrison could likely see more inside minutes, but she is just as capable playing off a flank given her overhead marking capacity which is well above her peers of the same height.


Tasmania has plenty of developmental types such as raw, but clever forward Ava Read and rebounding defender Ella Nast. The Devils’ future is just as bright, with a bumper crop of 2007-born young guns coming through the ranks, highlighted by star inside midfielder Priya Bowering. Fellow bottom-agers Harriet Bingley and Jorja Haberle are also progressing well, while over-agers Jasmyn Thompson and Tunisha Kikoak were both in the AFLW Draft mix last season after strong seasons, invited to the Draft Combine and have returned.


Round 1: vs. Oakleigh Chargers | Sunday, April 7 @ University of Tasmania Stadium

The Devils will be without Williams, Strong and Kikoak who are all playing in the AFLW Academy vs Under 23 All-Stars match on Saturday. However, Oakleigh will also be depleted given the amount of players featuring in the same game, which gives the Devils a good chance against a quality side.

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