Richmond has selected pacy midfielder/defender Isabel Bacon with its first selection, No. 13 overall, at tonight’s AFLW Draft.
Bacon is an inside midfielder who also excelled playing as a rebounding defender for Sandringham Dragons and Victoria Metro this season.
The 18-year-old grew up around sports, playing basketball and netball and competing in cross-country running throughout her formative years, including living with her family in Vancouver.
Bacon began focussing purely on football just last year but was quick to stand out to Richmond recruiters with her elite athleticism, explosive speed, endurance, sidestep, power, and strength.
An elite competitor with aggression and physicality in her game, Bacon was also one of the standouts at the National Combine, recording a 3.16 second 20m sprint and 7.55 minute two-kilometre time trial.
The 172cm utility ended the season in dominant form, adding an offensive edge to her impressive defensive numbers.
Bacon averaged 7.8 tackles and 14 disposals per game at Coates League level in 2023, including 41 touches and 23 tackles across the final two matches.
The Sandringham Dragons product was also awarded the Coaches Award for Victoria Metro at the Under 18 National Championships.
Richmond AFLW National Recruiting Manager Trent Mosbey said that Bacon had great versatility to play multiple roles across the ground.
“We love Isabel’s combination of attacking and defensive game style,” he said.
“Isabel can play on multiple-sized opponents and in multiple roles across the ground. Her ability to drive her legs and to power out of congestion was a real eye-catching feature of her game.
“She displays a fierce attack and high level of intensity at the ball and opposition, is an elite tackler and pressure player, and is highly regarded for regularly winning the ball back for her side and then attacking the game once in possession.”
Bacon our hearts melt, Issy 🥰👋 pic.twitter.com/SDMZxLag0P— RichmondW (@RichmondWomens) December 18, 2023
Mosbey added that he could see Bacon helping the Tigers across half-back and progressing into the midfield in the future.
“Isabel has displayed Richmond character traits and is highly regarded for her leadership, professionalism, coachability, and a strong desire to achieve,” he added.
“She has demonstrated that she is a consistent performer week to week and performed well under pressure against the best players from around the country when playing for Victoria Metro.
“We are delighted to have her at the Tigers.”