Bathurst are favourites to win inaugural women’s crown

ONE TO GO: The Lady Bushrangers have come a long way since running out for their opening match in the inaugural women’s Central West AFL season. Tomorrow they will play against the Orange Tigers in the grand final. 053015bushrangersAUSTRALIAN RULES
Nanjing Night Net

THE Bathurst Bushrangers are raging hot favourites to take out the inaugural Central West AFL women’s grand final at Bloomfield tomorrow against hosts Orange Tigers.

Since the women’s competition was formed this season, the Bushrangers have been dominant, stringing together 10 consecutive victories on their way to the grand final. Victory tomorrow would make it a perfect campaign.

Perhaps the performance that best demonstrates their season thus far was their 11-9-75 to 1-0-6 win over the Dubbo Demons in the major semi-final. Bathurst kept their rivals scoreless for three quarters.

Bushrangers captain Kelsey Smith said she didn’t form any major goals for the inaugural season, so earning a grand final spot was a thrill for her side.

“It’s incredible to be there. Thinking about how it could pan out, no-one knew the numbers that we were likely to get or how the season would go,” she said.

“We’ve certainly improved. Every team in the competition has shown a lot of improvement too, and we’ve grown in numbers at training and at games.

“Throughout the season we’ve picked up a few more players. There’s a really good vibe around the club and everyone loves training and playing.”

While the Bushrangers’ presence in tomorrow’s grand final is no surprise, their opponents are.

The Tigers posted just one win during the regular season before upsetting an understaffed Dubbo outfit 4-7-31 to 1-2-8 in the preliminary final.

Smith said if the Tigers can produce that level of football into the grand final, her Bushrangers will need to find that next gear.

“Orange moved the ball around really well. Dubbo didn’t have the numbers … and Orange just had the legs,” she said.

“They’ve only won the one home and away game, but they have been the team that have challenged us the most, one of the teams to get within two goals of us.

“They have some key players in their midfield and if they move the ball around like they did against Dubbo last week, then it will be tough.”

The Bushrangers take to the field for the women’s grand final at 1.30pm tomorrow.

BATHURST BUSHRANGERS: Abbey Hardie, Amy Copping, Elise Hull, Isabella Giuliano, Jessica Scadding, Kaitlyn Kennedy, Keeghan Tucker, Kelsey Smith, Kristal Thomas, Lauren Barnett, Mariah Gilchrist, Mikala Bringolf, Nikayla Smith, Rachel Hull, Rebecca Phillips, Sally-Anne Walker, Samara Hynes, Tori Whitla.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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