The AFL Players’ Association has revealed the inaugural AFLW 22Under22 squad, presented by The Diamond Guys, featuring the competition’s best young talent.
With the AFLW’s youngsters fully established after four seasons, the first iteration of the 22Under22 concept for AFLW players consists of a 31-person squad, selected by the AFLPA Board with support from Champion Data.
Young stars Ebony Marinoff, Danielle Ponter, Sophie Conway, Madison Prespakis, Chloe Molloy, Monique Conti, Sarah Allan and Isabel Huntington headline the inaugural squad.
Adelaide, 2019 AFLW premiers, are represented the most of any side, with five players featuring – Allan, Marinoff, Ponter, Anne Hatchard, and Eloise Jones – while Carlton, who lost to the Crows in the 2019 Grand Final, have the second-most with four players featuring.
To be eligible for selection, players must be aged 22 years or under for the entirety of the season, including the finals series.
AFL Players’ Association Board member, Meg Downie, said the concept is great recognition for the AFLW’s young talent during the early stages of their career.
“It’s exciting to see the 22Under22 concept enter the AFLW scene,” Downie said.
“AFLW has opened the doors for so many talented female footballers and I’ve seen firsthand how much the younger brigade are influencing the competition. There are some unbelievable players from this cohort.”
To coincide with the release of the inaugural AFLW 22Under22 squad, the AFLPA has also created a retrospective side compiling the best players aged 22 or under from the first three seasons of the AFLW competition (2017-2019).
22Under22 is the industry’s only recognised fan-voted award and provides the footy public with the power to select the final 22.
Fans can now visit 22under22.com.au to cast their vote, before the final team is revealed on April 21 in conjunction with the announcement of the AFLW Players’ MVP Awards.
Fans who submit a team that matches the final 22Under22 team will automatically go into the draw to win a custom 22Under22 jumper.
Voting closes midnight April 8, 2020.