By HerSport Editor
Dublin’s history making All-Ireland winning due, Niamh McEvoy and Sinéad Goldrick are the latest inter-county stars to put pen to paper and agree a move down under to the AFLW. The move now sees the number of Irish players confirmed for the 2020 Aussie Rules season to 18.
The dynamic Dublin duo, who recently became three-in-a-row All-Ireland champions, have agreed terms with Melbourne FC, becoming the club’s first female international recruits. Both McEvoy and Goldrick have been pivotal figures in Dublin's success and were nominated for All-Stars last week.
"I’ve always been a fan of AFLW and in many ways, they have been setting the standard in women’s sport globally," Goldrick said.
"To be able to have the chance to join a team and live and train in a professional environment in a sporting city like Melbourne is something that I’m extremely fortunate to be able to try.
"There are so many transferable skills between the two games – the high fielding and foot passing, in particular," the 29-year-old added.
McEvoy added: "There has been Irish girls who have went to Australia to play AFLW and have been able to successfully adapt to the game and I felt that the attributes I have as a Gaelic footballer would be well suited.
"Melbourne is an incredible club and there is strong links and history there between the club and Dublin GAA. The club’s culture is amazing and all the people from Melbourne that I’ve dealt with have been so nice.
"I think the high catch and fielding in general is a strength of mine that will be the most applicable transferring from Gaelic football to AFLW and I’m looking forward to working hard on the skills of the game, to try make sure I give a good account of myself while I’m there."
A huge number of Gaelic footballers have already been snapped up by AFLW clubs for the upcoming season, including Tipperary's Orla O'Dwyer (Brisbane Lions), Galway's Mairead Seoighe (North Melbourne), Leitrim's Aine Tighe and Louth's Kate Flood (both Fremantle), as well as the Mayo sisters Niamh and Grace Kelly (West Coast Eagles).
The 18 Irishwomen currently on AFLW lists for 2020 are:
Sinéad Goldrick (Melbourne FC)
Niamh McEvoy (Melbourne FC)
Cora Staunton (GWS Giants)
Yvonne Bonner (GWS Giants)
Sarah Rowe (Collingwood)
Aishling Sheridan (Collingwood)
Aisling McCarthy (Western Bulldogs)
Katy Herron (Western Bulldogs)
Niamh Kelly (West Coast Eagles)
Grace Kelly (West Coast Eagles)
Kate Flood (Fremantle)
Áine Tighe (Fremantle)
Aileen Gilroy (North Melbourne)
Mairéad Seoighe (North Melbourne)
Ailish Considine (Adelaide Crows)
Orla O’Dwyer (Brisbane Lions)
Joanne Doonan (Carlton Blues)
Clara Fitzpatrick (St Kilda)