2024 Rookie Me Central SANFLW Team of the Year

SEVEN players have gone back-to-back in our Rookie Me Central SANFL Women’s Team of the Year after the 2024 side was named today. Released the day before the official SANFL Women’s Team of the Year at tomorrow night’s awards night, the side is based off Team of the Week nominations to fill out a 24-player squad.

South Adelaide dominated our Team of the Year, recording six players which was double its nearest rival. The other three finalists in Glenelg, Central District and Norwood all had three players in the side, as did Woodville-West Torrens, while Sturt, West Adelaide and North Adelaide had the two apiece.

For the third time in four season, Glenelg superstar midfielder Jess Bates has earned the captaincy for the side, a feat she achieved in both 2021 and 2022, only missing out on the squad last season due to relocating to Victoria to play for Collingwood VFLW.

Bates was the only player to have a perfect Team of the Week record, making the side in all 12 matches she played, averaging 31.5 disposals, 3.7 marks, 7.8 clearances, 3.8 inside 50s and 1.5 rebound 50s.

Her vice-captain is the player with perhaps the most chance of upsetting her in the SANFLW best and fairest tomorrow night in South Adelaide’s Nikki Nield. The Panthers’ onballer made the side 10 times and was emergency once, a clear second best in the league. Nield played all 14 games and averaged 22.0 disposals, 4.2 marks, 4.6 clearances, 2.5 inside 50s and laid 10.6 tackles in a phenomenal effort.

The Rookie Me Central SANFLW Team of the Year has been running five seasons, and two outstanding players have earned representation in each of those five teams. They are North Adelaide premiership defender Kristi Harvey – who slots into full-back yet again – and retiring Central District premiership midfielder Shelby Smith. Both are premiership skippers and two of the best players in the competition not just this season, but across their careers.

The next best representation is Sturt’s Isobel Kuiper who was rewarded with her fourth Team of the Year nomination, named on a star-studded bench. The Double Blues onballer was joined there by South Adelaide defender Jaslynne Smith (third time), as well as Eagles’ ruck Leah Cutting and West Adelaide midfielder Zoe Venning (both second time).

On the field, three-time Team of the Year representative, Norwood midfielder/forward Jade Halfpenny was named at half-forward, while Kiana Lee made her first Team of the Year since 2021 – where she made back-to-back teams in 2020-21 – after a sensational year with the Redlegs. Just up from them is hard-running wing Tahlita Buethke who was the third Norwood player in the side.

South Adelaide had the most players with six, and aside from Smith and Nield, also had the competition’s equal leading goalkicker in Emily Brockhurst and SANFLW State squad ruck Soriah Moon. Young defender Esther Schirmer and midfielder Jordann Hickey rounded out the representation.

Partnering with Bates from the Bays was her partner-in-crime Jo Miller who produced an impressive debut season in the SANFLW coming from Queensland, while top-age wing-turned-onballer Violet Patterson also earned a deserving spot in the side.

Moving onto reigning premier Central District who is now out of SANFLW finals race, and equal leading goalkicker Katelyn Rosenzweig capped off her year with another spot at full-forward – a second consecutive honour there – while Jasmine Evans was next to her in the pocket.

Sturt was unlucky to miss finals, and alongside Kuiper is talented top-age young gun India Rasheed who earned a spot at half-forward, her second straight Team of the Year honour. Meanwhile for the Eagles, along with Cutting, skipper Annie Falkenberg made her second team, while first-time representative Christina Leuzzi was named in the back pocket.

West Adelaide had a couple of consistent players in the 24-strong squad with defender Lucy Boyd and the experienced Venning slotting in, while North Adelaide’s other representative with Harvey was top-age defender/midfielder Laela Ebert.

Fellow Rooster Aprille Crooks was named as one of three emergencies with Sturt midfielder Alisha Gepp and Central District tall Charlotte Riggs.


B: Annie Falkenberg (WWT Eagles) – Kristi Harvey (North Adelaide) – Christina Leuzzi (WWT Eagles)
HB: Laela Ebert (North Adelaide) – Lucy Boyd (West Adelaide) – Esther Schirmer (South Adelaide)
C: Violet Patterson (Glenelg) – Shelby Smith (Central District) – Tahlita Buethke (Norwood)
HF: India Rasheed (Sturt) – Kiana Lee (Norwood) – Jade Halfpenny (Norwood)
F: Emily Brockhurst (South Adelaide) – Katelyn Rosenzweig (Central District) – Jasmine Evans (Central District)
R: Soriah Moon (South Adelaide) – Jess Bates (c) – Nikki Nield (vc)
INT: Leah Cutting (WWT Eagles) – Jordann Hickey (South Adelaide) – Isobel Kuiper (Sturt) – Jo Miller (Glenelg) – Jaslynne Smith (South Adelaide) – Zoe Venning (West Adelaide)

EMG: Aprille Crooks (North Adelaide) – Alisha Gepp (Sturt) – Charlotte Riggs (Central District)


B: Marie Martino (Glenelg) – Madison Russell (West Adelaide) – Tiffany King (South Adelaide)
HB: Jess Edwards (North Adelaide) – Poppy Scholz (Glenelg) – Georgia Madigan (Central District)
C: Laitiah Huynh (Central District) – Alisha Gepp (Sturt) – Emma Kilpatrick (West Adelaide)
HF: Aprille Crooks (North Adelaide) – Charlotte Riggs (Central District) – Hannah Button (West Adelaide)
F: Shai Hiscock (Norwood) – Klaudia O’Neill (WWT Eagles) – Georgia Swan (Sturt)
R: Shay’Lee Dayman (Glenelg) – Monique Bessen (Sturt) – Grace Martin (WWT Eagles)
INT: Candice Belbin (Norwood) – Julia Clark (North Adelaide) – Marlie Fiegert (WWT Eagles) – Kate Harris (Sturt) – Emily Mableson (West Adelaide) – Poppy Waterford (WWT Eagles)

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