AFLW sign and trade period: How it works

The AFL Women’s Sign and Trade Period commenced on Monday, April 8.

In just the three days since the player movement window opened, there’s already been a flurry of changes across the competition.

Queenslander Katie Brennan headlines the completed moves after switching to the yellow and black of Richmond from the Western Bulldogs while 2018 QAFLW Best and Fairest Winner Tori Groves-Little has also switched Brisbane for the Gold Coast.

After a one-season hiatus from Queensland, Jamie Stanton will return to the sunshine state after signing with the Gold Coast SUNS after once season with North Melbourne. 

But how exactly does the sign and trade period work?

Prior to the window, expansion teams – including Gold Coast – could pre-list up to ten players from their women’s academies of development zones. Of those ten signings, three spots were reserved for junior players from a club’s development region who were of minimum draft age while the remaining seven could be open-age signings.

During this initial signing period, the SUNS signed their first three inaugural players – Charlotte Hammans (Bond University), Kitara Farrar (South Cairns) and Ellie Hampson (Hermit Park).

In this second window that opened on Monday, Gold Coast, along with Richmond, St Kilda and West Coast can sign an existing AFLW player from another club in the 2019 season.

Clubs can sign a maximum of 12 players each through this period.

Existing clubs can lose no more than four players under the guidelines with the exception of both Brisbane and Fremantle, who can lose a maximum of eight players given the addition of the SUNS and Eagles to each respective state-zones which were previously exclusive.

Established clubs must cut their squads to a list 0f 22, along with two rookie spots, by the end of the 11-day signing period, which concludes on April 18 ahead of the list lodgement deadline on May 3

All player contracts in AFLW have been one-year deals across each of the first three seasons meaning all 311 players are out of contract.

For the first time however, all AFLW teams have the opportunity to sign one or two-season contracts for the 2020 season and beyond. There is no limit for the amount of one or two season deals can be signed at any one team.


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