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SBD Global/June 19, 2017/Franchises

Australian Football League Reveals Eight Franchises Bidding To Join AFLW In '19

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The Australian Football League announced that Essendon, Geelong, Gold Coast Suns, Hawthorn, North Melbourne, Richmond, St. Kilda and West Coast Eagles submitted bids to join the AFL Women’s competition in '19. The AFL anticipates the successful bids being announced in late July (AFL). AFL.com's Marc McGowan reported North Melbourne and Tasmania unveiled plans to "replicate Adelaide's premiership-winning AFL Women's union" with the Northern Territory in their joint submission for a '19 license. The "budding partnership is a long time in the works," but Kangaroos CEO Carl Dilena is "so intent on making it a success that his goal is to have half of the playing list from Tasmania." The Roos "hope to be one of at least two new clubs -- and up to four -- awarded a spot in the third season of the fledgling competition," which began in February. Dilena: "Tasmania has understandably been crying out for greater representation on the national stage and our AFLW proposal seeks to deliver this through a genuine joint venture approach. A critical success factor for our proposal is the development of female football talent in Tasmania and sustained growth of the national AFLW talent pool. We are already a long way down the path to achieving this" (AFL.com, 6/16). In Sydney, Young, Kinsella & Larkins reported Gold Coast Suns CEO Mark Evans said that the bid "made sense." He said, "We thought it was a no-brainer for us. What we saw with the women's grand final at Metricon Stadium was this incredible interest in women's footy."  Evans said that if there was "no local women's team, upcoming players would suffer." He said, "The problem in Queensland is that we're doing this too well" (ABC, 6/15).
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