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Lions welcome eight new AFLW players

${customImageCaption} - Brisbane Lions,AFLW Draft

Brisbane Lions AFLW CEO Breanna Brock and Senior Coach Craig Starcevich proudly welcomed eight new players at the 2017 NAB AFL Women’s Draft earlier today.

Yeronga Devils’ midfielder Jordan Zanchetta was the Lions’ first round pick, 7thoverall, and joined Brock and Starcevich in Melbourne for the announcement.

Arianna Clarke (15), Renee Cowan (23), Kalinda Howarth (31), Emma Pittman (37), Ruby Blair (41), Sophie Conway (45) and Jessy Keeffe (48) were also welcomed into the Lions’ Den in 2018.

Starcevich said it was a proud day for the Club. 

“It’s exciting and it reignites the excitement we had in year one around the team.

“We have just added an incredible amount of talent to our Club.

“We’ve been able to recruit really good people with strong character, which is just as important.”

Starcevich was particularly pleased to present Zanchetta her Lions polo, after she had experienced a tough 12 months on the sidelines. 

“We were all devastated to hear Jordan had injured her ACL in May 2016, ruling her out of the first AFLW season,” he said.

“She had been in Queensland’s starting midfield for a number of years. We kept her close to the group through her rehab and were happy to see her return to close to her best form by QWAFL Grand Final Day. We couldn’t be happier to have her back around players she has grown up with and shared so many memorable footy experiences.” 

Zanchetta cannot wait for November’s pre-season to start. “When I found out I was going to be the Lions’ number 1 pick I was speechless. I’ve waited a long time for this opportunity and I’m very grateful. I’m very happy and proud to be a part of it,” she said.

Lions AFLW CEO Brock said the Lions were humbled with nearly 100 draft hopefuls nominating for the eleven possible places.

“We’ve spent hours and hours watching vision of potential draftees. Ultimately it came down to who suits our team structure, who can help us and who will develop as a player.

“We’ve certainly got a group of hungry, determined players. They’re going to fight tooth and nail for a spot in our run on 22 and will help us go one further in 2018.”

Three Brisbane Lions AFLW Rookies will be announced on Friday October 20th.

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs