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VFLW: Season Preview

A host of familiar faces will feature in the VFLW, as the North Melbourne Tasmanian Kangaroos' VFLW affiliate, Melbourne University Women’s Football Club, kicks off its 2019 campaign.

North Media previews the season ahead.

Coach

Scott Gowans (North AFLW)

Leadership group

Emma Kearney (Captain)*
Brittany Gibson*
Kaitlyn Ashmore*
Emma King*
Jess Duffin*
Tahni Nestor
* North Melbourne listed

Full squad

Sophie Abbatangelo (North AFLW), Laura Amelung, Katie Angelis, Jessica Anwyl, Amy Arundel, Kaitlyn Ashmore (North AFLW), Daria Bannister (North AFLW), Daisy Bateman (North AFLW), Nicole Bresnehan (North AFLW), Jenna Bruton (North AFLW), Erin Bult, Katelyn Cox, Courtney Daniec, Jess Duffin (North AFLW), Kim Ebb, Sarah Farmer, Jasmine Garner (North AFLW), Brittany Gibson (North AFLW), Kate Gillespie-Jones (North AFLW), Jasmine Grierson (North AFLW), Libby Haines (North AFLW), Chloe Haines (North AFLW), Danielle Hardiman (North AFLW), Margaret Hare, Elyce Hay, Emma Humphries (North AFLW), Chelsea Jansen, Nicole Julian, Emma Kearney (North AFLW), Emma King (North AFLW), Elisha King (North AFLW), Beth Lynch (North AFLW), Mietta McDonald, Taylor Mesiti (North AFLW), Nadia Moore, Makeisha Muller, Tahni Nestor, Neve O'Connor, Kira Price, Asha Price, Emma Quinn, Tahlia Randall (North AFLW), Ashleigh Riddell (North AFLW), Angelena Roan, Airlie Runnalls, Vivien Saad, Cleo Saxon-Jones, Millie Shone, Jade Tancred, Jacara Thomas, Jess Trend (North AFLW), Aisling Tupper, Lucy Walsh, Steph Webb

North AFLW stars

Jenna Bruton
The first ever winner of the North Melbourne Tasmanian Kangaroos’ best and fairest will aim to carry over her momentum from a memorable AFLW season.

Praised for her work rate and ability to win the footy in traffic, expect to see 23-year-old rack up high numbers with consistency.

Kate Gillespie-Jones
After a breakout season in the AFLW, the alternating ruck and forward will again work in tandem with dominant tall Emma King, this time in the state competition.

Gillespie-Jones could fast track her development over the winter break and take another step forward come the Roos’ second season.

Jess Duffin
You will be hard-pressed to find a better performed player in the VFLW than Jess Duffin.

The rebounding defender garnered a host of accolades last season, including the Lambert-Pearce Medal as the league’s best and fairest player, and was named captain of the 2018 VFLW Team of the Year.

Duffin’s dominant AFLW form, which saw her break records in four separate categories, suggest that the 29-year-old could be in for another big year.

VFLW-listed

Tahni Nestor
Having impressed North AFLW senior coach Scott Gowans during her time at Carlton, Nestor will bring her tenacious approach to Melbourne University in 2019.

The 28-year-old, who is also part of the MUGARS’ leadership group, is the only VFLW-listed player to receive this accolade, highlighting her invaluable experience.

“Tahni was in Hawthorn’s leadership group and I don’t think she’s that far off the next level (AFLW),” Gowans told the VFLW website.

What the coach said

“We want to win.

“Last year was all about development; this year there’s a mix of winning and development.

“We believe winning is part of development, but we don’t want to play a shut-down type of footy in order to win, so we’re going to have a very open style of play and take the opposition on.” - Scott Gowans on VFL website

Key games

Despite a plethora of games at the Melbourne University Main Oval, Melbourne Uni will take part in seven double-headers alongside North’s VFL side.

Round 2 (Pride Game) – Melb Uni v Darebin (MU) – 2.30pm, Sunday, May 19th
Round 4 – Melb Uni v Richmond (Arden Street) – 11.30am, Saturday, June 1st
Round 13 – Melb Uni v Hawthorn (MU) – 2.30pm, Sunday, August 4th

View the full 2019 VFLW fixture here

Round 1
Melbourne University vs. Geelong
Sunday, 12th May - 2.30pm
Melbourne University Main Oval

Team

Melbourne Uni
B: 45. A. Arundel, 3. T. Mesiti, 17. E. Hay
HB: 22. J. Anwyl, 26. N. O’Connor, 32. C. Daniec
C: 53. J. Grierson, 36. N. Julian, 14. M. McDonald
HF: 38. K. Angelis, 51. J. Tancred, 40. A. Runnalls
F: 4. E. King, 57. A. Price, 18. A. Tupper
R: 5. K. Gillespie-Jones, 25. J. Garner, 35. J. Bruton
Int: 34. K. Cox, 47. M. Hare, 46. A. Roan , 52. M. Shone
Emg: 42. L. Amelung, 44. E. Bult, 30. S. Farmer, 41. J. Thomas
23P: 39. V. Saad