Richmond has locked in a further two players to its inaugural AFLW list with VFLW Tigers Laura Bailey and Kate Dempsey signed as pre-draft selections.

The Tigers have committed to selecting Bailey with selection No.71 overall in the 2019 NAB AFLW Draft (pick No.35 Victoria only draft) and Dempsey with pick No.85 overall (44 Victorian).

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The duo of signings come as a result of a recently introduced rule, which allowed expansion clubs the opportunity to add Academy players to their list before the draft.

Alana Woodward was added to the list immediately with Dempsey, Bailey and another VFLW Tiger, Grace Egan, subject to a bidding process that took place with existing AFLW clubs this morning.

Dempsey, 24, who is an original member of the Richmond Women’s program, has played 28 of a possible 29 games across the past two seasons.

The 160cm midfielder was Richmond’s best in their recent elimination final defeat, gathering 20 disposals including 18 kicks.

An ultra-consistent performer who is renowned for her foot-skills and intercept marking, Dempsey received a bid from Collingwood (No.42 in Victorian Draft) which the Tigers matched with their next available selection.

Bailey, 27, has earned a second chance in the AFLW after a standout year playing at both ends of the ground.

The policewoman by trade played eight games for the Western Bulldogs in the 2017 and 2018 AFLW campaigns before being squeezed out of the premiership-winning list.

After being known as a reliable medium-sized defender, Bailey added versatility to her game this year, showing capability as a crafty forward.

Bailey’s best game in the front six was a three-goal display against Casey Demons in Bendigo, where she also gathered 14 disposals and laid three tackles.

The 27-year-old received a bid from Carlton at pick No. 59 overall (30 Victorian) which the Tigers matched by using their next available selection.

Egan, 19, who has developed into a fine midfielder under the tutelage of Tom Hunter at the Swinburne Centre, will join Carlton as a first-round selection after the Blues committed selection No.13 (nine Victorian) to the Shepparton product.

It is a rapid rise for the Murray Bushrangers product who missed out on U/18 Victoria Country and draft selection just last year.

Richmond Head of Women’s Football, Kate Sheahan, said that it was a great thrill to have 12 Richmond VFLW players fulfill their dreams of being on an AFLW list.

“We are so excited to have Laura and Kate officially part of our AFLW program and tremendously proud to see Grace as a first-round draft pick,” she added.

“All three girls have worked extremely hard to be given this opportunity and we wish all of them the best. We are delighted for our entire football program.”

“When Tommy (Hunter) was asked by AFL Victoria in March a headline that he would like to see at season’s end, he said that it was for 10 of our girls to become AFLW players, we’ve got 12.”

The NAB AFLW Draft will take place on October 22 with a further 11 spots remaining on the Tigers’ list.

Richmond inaugural players for 2020:

Katie Brennan
Phoebe Monahan
Iilish Ross
Maddy Brancatisano
Christina Bernardi
Sabrina Frederick
Monique Conti
Hannah Burchell
Courtney Wakefield
Tayla Stahl
Alice Edmonds
Grace Campbell
Rebecca Miller
Akec Makur Chuot
Gabby Seymour (rookie)
Kodi Jacques
Alana Woodward
Laura Bailey
Kate Dempsey

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We’ve locked in two more AFLW Tigers, @lauralbailey13 and @katedempsey95

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