West’s wonder woman nominated for draft
Friday, 16th May, 2014
By Ethan James
When Rebecca Jones travelled to Adelaide earlier this year to try out for the SANFL All Stars team, taking part in the AFL draft was the furthest thing from her mind.
But two months on, that is exactly where she’s ended up.
The 17-year-old was among 50 who tried out for the All Stars in mid-March.
Although a place in the final team wasn’t forthcoming, the feedback from coaches and selectors was positive and shortly afterwards her name was registered for the 2014 Women’s Draft.
However, she isn’t exactly sure just how it got there.
“I didn’t get selected in the SANFL side but one of the girls nominated me afterwards,” Rebecca explained. “I’m still not sure who it was.
“My cousin was also at the trials so it may have been her.”
Regardless of how it happened, Rebecca will join one 284 nominated players in Monday night’s draft.
From that pool, Western Bulldogs Football Club and Melbourne FC select up to 24 players. They join the clubs’ 24 retained players in preparation for the 2014 AFL Women’s Exhibition game.
The match takes place at Etihad Stadium on Saturday, June 28 ahead of the Bulldogs and Demons men’s fixture.
Rebecca played rugby league as a junior but jumped at the chance to make the transition to AFL when the women’s competition began three years ago.
West have only won four matches since the start of the league in 2012 but that hasn’t dampened the Willyama student’s enthusiasm for the game.
She played nine games in her debut season and was voted in the top six ‘Best on Ground’ for her side eight times from 13 games in 2013.
“My dad (Craig) and brothers (Luke and Josh) all play or have played for West,” she said.
“I love the club and wouldn’t play for anyone else in town.
“They have helped me out a lot and brought me a long way.
“We’ll get there eventually and hopefully our first win in a while isn’t too far away.”
The draft will be live streamed online.
Needless to say, Rebecca will be playing close attention.
“I’ll be tuning in, I will be a bit nervous but I’m also pretty excited.”
Following a stint on the sidelines with injury, she is hoping to play her second match of the season when West meet South at Alma Oval at 11.25am tomorrow morning,
In the other women’s fixture, Central and North go head-to-head at Jubilee Oval at the same time.