Hard-working defender Hannah McLaren will join the Tigers for the 2021 NAB AFL Women’s season.

McLaren has been added to Richmond’s primary list, following the movement of Holly Whitford to the Club’s inactive list.

Whitford, who played four matches for Richmond last year, has been unable to overcome persistent foot issues in time for the season that commences on January 31.

“We are shattered for Holly, who has worked diligently to overcome her foot troubles,” said Richmond Head of Women’s Football, Kate Sheahan.

“Unfortunately, we have reached this point in the year, and her timeline for recovery is still distant. As such an integral part of our squad, it is important we made Holly’s long-term physical health a priority.

“It’s disappointing but has presented a fantastic opportunity for Hannah to be available for selection, while Holly remains heavily involved in our program and completes her rehabilitation.”

Holly Whitford in action against Carlton

McLaren who will wear the number 29 guernsey this season, is a familiar face at the Swinburne Centre, having joined the Tigers as a train-on player for the 2020 AFLW season.

The former Oakleigh Chargers captain also played 10 matches for Richmond in the 2019 VFLW season, including the elimination final loss to the Western Bulldogs.

“Hannah has been overlooked in three different drafts, so this is a great story of persistence and resilience,” Sheahan said.

“Throughout her time with us at both AFLW and VFLW level, Hannah has shown that she is a reliable player. Hannah’s professionalism and positive attitude helps to make those around her better.

“She will slot in well to our group, and we look forward to seeing what she can do now that she is with us full-time. This is a great reward for a lot of effort over a long period of time.”

McLaren is the daughter of 328-match AFL umpire, Scott.

01:23 Mins
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Get to know: Hannah McLaren

Get to know Hannah McLaren as she becomes a part of the Richmond AFLW list.

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