Richmond VFLW captain and midfielder Jess Kennedy has been crowned the Club’s inaugural VFLW Best and Fairest.

More than 200 guests packed the Richmond Football Club’s Maurice Rioli Room to witness the close count, as Kennedy edged out teammate Jacqui Graham by just one vote.

Kennedy, 28, polled 49 votes across the 14-round home-and-away season.

Third place was a three-way tie between Phoebe Monahan, Lisa Davie and Evelyn Burry, who all polled 45 votes.

Kennedy joined Richmond’s inaugural VFL program from Carlton, where she played four AFLW matches for the Blues.

A physiotherapist by trade, Kennedy spent five years with Bendigo Thunder, where she played in three Grand Finals and won two premierships.

She took out Thunder's best and fairest award in 2016, before she was drafted to Carlton as a free agent.

“Jess is the ultimate professional,” said Richmond’s AFLW Female Football Operations Manager Kate Sheahan.

“She has invested whole heartedly in the Richmond VFLW program and we see this week in, week out with her performance on the field.

“Jess is a quick, courageous and incredibly smart midfielder. We have loved watching her develop even further following her time in the AFLW competition.

“She has led this young and emerging group with passion, pride and humility and is incredibly deserving of this award.”

The Club also announced the winner of the VFLW Values Award – for both a player and staff member.

Presented to the player that best embodied the Club’s VFLW values - support, growth and challenge - Alana Woodward was acknowledged for her dedication to upholding the Club’s values consistently throughout the season.

The staff recipient was Steph Gourd, the program’s physiotherapist.

The VFLW Tigers’ season finished last Saturday with a three-point win over the Southern Saints.

The team finished their inaugural year in the VFLW competition ranked 11th on the ladder.

Richmond VFLW 2018 Best and Fairest top three:

1. Jess Kennedy (49 votes)
2. Jacqui Graham (48 votes)
Eq. 3. Evelyn Burry (45 votes)
Eq. 3. Lisa Davie (45 votes)
Eq. 3. Phoebe Monahan (45 votes)

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Congratulations to @jk_1990, winner of the Club’s inaugural @richmondwomens VFLW Best and Fairest

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