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Essendon, Hawthorn slam AFL’s women footy snub

Hawthorn and Essendon have been left “extremely disappointed” and “frustrated” after being denied AFLW teams.

AFL boss Gil McLachlan today awarded licences for six clubs over the next three years.

2019 licences

  • North Melbourne
  • Geelong

2020 licences

  • Gold Coast
  • West Coast
  • St Kilda
  • Richmond

Today’s announcement means the Hawks, Bombers, Port Adelaide and Sydney are the only clubs without teams until at least 2021.

Port Adelaide and Sydney didn’t apply for licences.

Essendon chief Xavier Campbell today said the AFL had “missed a wonderful opportunity to fast track the development of the rich talent pools of the remote communities of the Tiwi Islands and West Arnhem Land, and Australia’s largest population growth corridor, North West Melbourne”.

Meanwhile, Hawthorn chief Tracey Gaudry said “with the largest number of female members in the league and the experience of building a VFLW team from the ground up, we demonstrated our ability to create an AFLW team that could hit the ground running”.

“Given the strength of our submission, it’s incredibly disappointing to be denied a licence for not only the 2019, but the 2020 competition.”

In remarkably similarly statements, both clubs slammed the lack of clarity about what happens in 2021.

“We are also frustrated there is no clear line of sight on when the AFL will decide to expand the women’s competition beyond 2020,” Campbell said.