The VFLW Tigers opened Saturday's Dreamtime triple-header with a commanding 35-point win over Essendon at the Swinburne Centre.
The match began with a unity dance with players from both the Tigers and Bombers joining in.
The hosts then burst out of the blocks booting three of the game's four opening-term goals and eventually reigned victorious in front of the large crowd.
VFLW coach Tom Hunter said the girls focused on “setting the scene” for Saturday’s Dreamtime triple-header.
“We made it a really big focus to play our way and playing our Richmond brand, and I think the supporters who came out to watch would be really pleased with that," Hunter said.
The side was bolstered by the inclusions of recent AFLW signings Monique Conti and Katie Brennan, and both proved more than worthy of their Richmond stripes.
Brennan (20 disposals) fought hard throughout and eventually got rewarded on the scoreboard with two goals in the third quarter.
“Katie’s fantastic around the ball,” Hunter said. “She’s very clean, and she can kick both sides.”
Conti (18 disposals, including 13 handballs) made great efforts to support the Tigers over the duration of the match and ensured the ball rarely left their half.
Hunter valued Conti’s ability to “get the ball from inside to outside”.
“For them to come in and get away from the contest… and give our forwards first use of the ball, it was fantastic,” he said.
Alice Edmonds was a deserving recipient of the Aunty Pam Pedersen Trophy Award after a convincing performance in the ruck.
Edmonds proved a true team player contributing six inside-50s, which resulted in scoring opportunities for her teammates.
Alice Edmonds receives the Aunty Pam Pedersen Trophy for Best on Ground pic.twitter.com/pX1vlChPPX— RichmondW (@RichmondWomens) May 25, 2019
Hunter said Edmonds was starting to develop her ruck craft, which came in good use this week.
“She just gave our ‘mids’ first use, and one of the reasons we were so successful in the game was because of her work,” he said.
Akec Makur Chuot (20 disposals, one goal) also proved a force to be reckoned with.
The 26-year-old kicked an incredible goal from 40 metres out running off half-back in the first quarter, and also kept immense pressure on every opponent she encountered.
“We love the way Akec goes about her footy,” Hunter said. “She’s such a valued member of our side, and we’re really lucky to have her.”
The VFLW Tigers are next in action against Melbourne Uni at Arden Street, North Melbourne on Saturday June 1 from 11:50am.
Hunter predicts tough competition against another undefeated team.
“Melbourne Uni are a fantastic side with their North Melbourne affiliate,” Hunter said.
“They’ve got some really dangerous players, and we’re really looking forward to the challenge.”