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Tuesday, February 5, 2019

AFLW 2019 season launched

Fitter, stronger, more skilled and better paid — that is how the AFL top brass were selling their women's competition at the launch of the third AFLW season.

"We want a bit more of a vision for the next few seasons, so we can see where this league is actually going, and whether the time and sacrifices are worth it," Geelong's Melissa Hickey said.
Her team is one of two new sides — along with North Melbourne — added to the competition this season, which begins on the weekend.
It means there are now 300 female players using the AFL's high-performance training facilities.
And with three elite pre-seasons now under the belts of many of those players, league boss Gillon McLachlan said the word from clubs is that many players are reaching new heights, both athletically and with their technique.
But even with increased professionalism and a 38 per cent pay rise this season, the life of an AFLW player remains considerably different to that of their counterparts in the men's competition.
For starters, female players are still having to balance work and football.
With the home-and-away season running just seven weeks, they play a limited number of games at the elite level in any year.
And then there is the pay: tier 1 players get just $24,600.
Four more teams will be added next season, including ones from the West Coast Eagles and Richmond, the winners of the two previous men's flags.