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Wednesday, April 24, 2024 - 12:36 PM


I wanted to take the opportunity to pen a mid-season review to our members as we reach the WAFLW half-way point.

We currently sit 5-2 on the ladder, a game clear in third having showcased significantly more competitive, process-driven performances in 2024. Our values of trust, selfless, resilient and spirit are a major part of the fabric of our Womens Program, and we are pleased that our players and support staff are showcasing performances which truly reflect these values both on and off the field.

We recognised at the end of 2023 that although we made significant in-roads with a 5-win season, the only team to do so in their second year of the competition, we were not going to rest on this. We felt our list could take significant steps forward if further commitment was made to aspects of their preparation and recovery – We also felt we were able to push our existing talent harder and further to be the best they could be.

A robust List Management strategy was put in place to compliment a bold Premiership Model, adopted by the clubs board, that would see the club work collaboratively to remove barriers so our players could simply just perform. We recognise we are an organisation which champions inclusivity and collaboration, but we also recognise that we are a football club, with our members and fans expecting spirit-filled performances that are representative of the West Perth way.

The implementation of the ground-breaking, WAFL/W-first Personal Excellence Hub, powered by Oasis People & Culture has equipped our players with the tools and resources to help them do just that – Perform. Travis Fitch, our Head of Personal Excellence (Resilience & Wellbeing Coach) encourages our high-performance athletes to simply take responsibility for their needs within the program and this is where we’ve seen large steps forward toward sustained success.

Our partners in preparation, Athletic Institute, continue to provide our WAFLW and Rogers Cup athletes with industry-best Strength & Conditioning which has seen both squads’ injury lists remain minimal. Our NEW partners in recovery, Fitstop Joondalup have injected even more expectation in professionalism into our athletes with the installation of a 2-person Cold Plunge Bath and 3-person Infrared Sauna in our newly adopted full-time facilities here at Pentanet Stadium.

Our WAFLW players are supported by the most diverse and experienced coaching team in WAFLW. We have seen by our ‘Teach NOT Test’ approach that our players are proving themselves to be problem solvers and the level of belief instilled in them doesn’t just come from their peers but our coaching staff too.

Head Coach Clint Degebrodt is supported by Jason Bloom, Donna Field, Tori Audino, Kristen Nelson, Paul Beaver, Louise McBride, and Carly Sutton.

We also recognise that our performances against the competitions best – Claremont and East Fremantle showcase the areas that we WANT to be better in. We look to these sides for examples of professionalism, competitiveness, and craft but we look to surpass them as we grow in this competition and set a new foundation in what high-performance teams can look like in the WAFLW competition.

I also wish to recognise the significance of our Rogers Cup program which continues its undefeated run in the Rogers Cup competition – Sitting 7-0 for 2024, following on from an undefeated, premiership-winning season in 2023.

The level of talent, coachability and character that we are seeing within our Rogers Cup program is a testament to the coaching group of Scott Kounis, Brett Foster, Hannah Philip and Damon Brimson who continue to champion our values in everything they do with this talented, up and coming group.

Scott Kounis feels this group is ahead of the team from 2023 when compared to this time last year:

“We’re moving the ball even better than what we did in 2023 and we continue to be the best defensive unit in the competition conceding just 94 points in 7 games. This group of developing talent have proven themselves coachable.

We have actively rotated our squad each week to ensure all players on our list are seeing valuable on-field minutes in 2024. We will look to solidify our squad in the back half of the competition.

It should also be noted that we’re only in this position too due to professionalism and high-performance parameters of our Moora Citrus Female Football Academy. It’s fast becoming a factory for talent and our Rogers Cup system with benefit greatly for years to come.”

I want to finish with extending thanks to our members and supporters who have jumped aboard in 2024.

We are seeing increases in game-day attendance and online streaming numbers for WAFLW and Rogers Cup, our engagement with members on social media and it’s being felt by all players.

As Head of WAFLW Development, I am thankful for the supportive board, led by President Dr. Neale Fong, club CEO Joe McCarthy and all staff which enable us all to be the best we can be.  

We hit the mid-way point with momentum and confidence – We must simply remain connected by Red & Blue as we look to hopefully play finals in 2024 – A feat which no ‘expansion’ club has achieved in the WAFLW since it’s inception within a 3-year time period.