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Sheahan secures key Tiger job

Kate Sheahan has been appointed Richmond’s AFL Women’s Football Operations Manager, as the Tigers ramp up their push for inclusion in the AFLW competition.

Sheahan has a strong background in elite sport, having worked as a professional tennis coach and played for Collingwood in the inaugural AFL Women’s season.

Her qualifications include an Exercise Science Degree Majoring in Sports Coaching.

“Kate has a great understanding of what a strong program and supporting culture should look like. This will be critical as we establish our program for our entry into the AFLW,” said Richmond’s General Manager of Football Talent, Dan Richardson.

Expansion of the AFLW has been postponed until the 2019 season, with the Tigers extremely hopeful of, and focused on, being awarded a licence to compete in the competition then.

They see Sheahan’s appointment to the full-time Football Operations Manager’s role as pivotal to this happening.

Sheahan, for her part, is determined to make Richmond a destination of choice for female players.

“I felt this real warmth,” Sheahan told the ‘Sunday Herald Sun’ after walking into the Tigers’ newly-named Swinburne Centre at Punt Road for the first time.

“I think that’s what will make this club a great footy team for women.

“I want females to walk in here and never want to walk out. That’s what my plan is.”

Sheahan, the daughter of esteemed veteran AFL football journalist, Mike Sheahan, emphasised that Richmond wants to develop home-grown talent.

“We don’t want to be one of those clubs that goes and steals talent from other clubs,” she said.

“Our big focus is going to be the Next Generation academies.

“We are going to be the club that has the best pathway for multicultural and Indigenous athletes to come in, because the AFL needs it. We’re going to nail it . . .

“I want this to be the best high-performance AFLW club in the league, where all of the girls want to play.”