Expansion, while an exciting time for the future of the top level of women’s football, offers a comparatively nerve-wracking time for existing clubs.

When North Melbourne first came into the competition, it took full advantage of the recruiting concessions afforded to it as a new side, bringing in established stars such as Emma Kearney, Kaitlyn Ashmore and Jenna Bruton.

Since arriving from Collingwood, Jas Garner has evolved her game to become one of the top players in the competition. As an athletic, intelligent, goal-kicking midfielder, she’s worth her weight in gold.

With so many exciting young players coming through the ranks, the vice-captain says she’s more committed to North than ever.  

“I’m absolutely loving my time here and I don’t think I’ll be going anywhere,” Garner told North Media.

“I’m loving what we’ve got here, and we’re here to win a premiership. Hopefully we can get that.

“Hopefully we see a bit more of Alice (O’Loughlin), Brooke (Brown), and a few of the other girls. They’ve been working really hard and I’m really excited for them.”

03:07 Mins
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AFLW: Jasmine Garner interview (October 26, 2021)

Reigning club champion Jas Garner chats to North Media in the early stages of pre-season about her excitement at meeting and training with the new Roos.

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After listing Garner as her favourite player before the 2021 NAB AFLW Draft, Perri King now finds herself sharing a change room with her former idol.

As AFLW enters its sixth season, new draftees like King have been able to watch a national women’s competition since before they were teenagers.

Garner undoubtedly has fans across the country, but says the way the women’s game has evolved makes her relationship with King special.

“I think back to when I was 13 or 14 and I looked up to the AFL boys’ players. I wanted to be them,” Garner said.

“Now these girls can look up to the women’s players. It’s really exciting … it’s just awesome.

“‘Pez’ and I are good friends now. Not only teammates, but friends.

“I’m rapt to be able to work with her and help her on her journey.”