PREVIEW | 2024 WAFLW Round 6: Friday

AFTER a week off to refresh, the WAFL Women’s players return to action in an extended early start to Round 6. It all kicks off tomorrow night at Pentanet Stadium between the top two sides in West Perth and Claremont, before the following three games are played over the following two days.

  • Team
  • West Perth
  • Claremont


Nothing is better than seeing two undefeated sides going head-to-head when all others have suffered a loss, but that is what confronts the two teams headlining Friday night action. The home side West Perth is the big improver thus far in the 2024 season, heading into Round 6 off the bye with a 4-0 record. They did come against four of the bottom five clubs, but aside from some early inaccuracy, did it well. Claremont did what it needed to do each week, knocking off its two biggest rivals in East Fremantle and South Fremantle, as well as producing victories over Swan Districts and East Perth.



West Perth will miss star AFLW talent Megan Kauffman who heads back to Fremantle for its off-season, while Tarnica Golisano also finished her impressive stint for this season back at the Falcons. They were among a massive six changes for West Perth, with the Falcons welcoming back Brooke Hongell and ruck Stacey Francis-Bayman, while top-ager Kaitlyn Roper plays her first WAFLW League game this year coming off a Falcons’ Rogers Cup Best and Fairest in 2023.

The Tigers will be without star young gun Claudia Wright who will play in the AFLW Academy match against the Under 23 All-Stars in Melbourne on Saturday. Also out of the side is AFLW-listed Mackenzie Webb who heads back to preseason, as well as Emily Elkington. Claremont adds some speed into the side in Eva O’Donnell as well as running power in Juliet Kelly, while Emily Bonser returns to the midfield. However the Tigers will also miss some experience in Kate Orme and Jacinta Valentini, but unveil Ella Gilbey who was one of the most impressive testers in the state at the Preseason Testing Day, and fellow bottom-ager Savannah Muir


West Perth has a couple of bottom-agers in the State Academy with Mia Russo and Samara Sallie named up respective ends. Over-age defender Liliana Grassenis has been rock solid in defence, while Roper gets her chance at League level after an ultra-consistent bottom-age year at Rogers Cup level.

Claremont’s Bec Anderson is an overager in the State Academy, while Gilbey, Muir and Kelly are a few bottom-age names to keep an on for the Tigers. O’Donnell needs a clean run with injury and she would be carefully watched by AFLW clubs, while Georgia Webb – twin sister of Mackenzie – has some developable traits.


Claremont’s midfield is phenomenal with reigning Dhara Kerr Medallist Jayme Harken alongside Bonser and in the in-form Taylah Orzel, but the loss of Orme and Valentini from the outside-inside rotation will hurt. Especially coming up against the likes of Emily Bennett, Imahra Cameron and Bianca Webb all of whom have AFLW experience. Add in the red-hot Taylor Ferguson and the Falcons are flying at the moment. The Tigers have some punch up forward though which could be the key with Anjelique Raison and Adele Arnup a couple of notable goalkickers.


On paper the clash looks fairly even, with West Perth’s midfield perhaps even a smidgeon ahead on depth. However the Tigers are so strong at either end that they can debut players and still get the best result. It takes a brave tipster to go against the Tigers who have not lost a home and away game since 2022, so until Claremont give a reason not to tip them, the Tigers in a tight one.

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