WOMEN’S AFL has become the new punting frontier.
And the Fremantle Dockers and Melbourne Demons are the two teams that share favouritism to win the inaugural season, which runs
Following yesterday’s women’s draft, where the eight women’s clubs filled out their team lists, the Dockers and Demons are locked at the top of the betting at $4.50 with Sportsbet.com.au.
Freo was wound in half a point from $5 after it snared Hayley Miller with the fourth pick in the draft.
And the bookie’s Patrick Garschagen says punters have been all over the Dockers, with over 40 per cent of the money flowing in for the Purple Haze to win the flag.
“Freo has been clever in its drafting for the inaugural Women’s AFL season, recruiting a mix of speed, talls and midfield grunt which has punters showing plenty of early interest,” Garschagen said.
“You could throw a blanket over the rest of the field, with the market more congested than Melbourne’s peak hour traffic!”
Miller is no stranger to the Dockers’ marquee signings, having played with Kiara Bowers for the Coastal Titans in the Western Australian Women’s Football League, and with Kara Donnelley (and priority pick Ebony Antonio) for Western Australia in an exhibition match against Victoria.
“I’ve played a couple of games with those two girls and they’re great people and I do get along with them,” she told the AFL website.
“Being able to play with them week in week out will be great.
“They are awesome players so I will get to learn a lot off both of them.”
The Dees grabbed Darebin star Elise O’Dea at pick eight, joining marquee Daisy Pearce – who captained her at the Falcons.
O’Dea won four straight premierships with the Falcons after moving to Melbourne from the ACT in a bid to improve her already pristine football.
“I moved to play football and it’s been great,” O’Dea told melbournefc.com.au
“I thought the best thing I could dream for was being picked in the first-round.
“It’s all just setting in.
“Now I just can’t wait to play.”
Greater Western Sydney had the first pick in the draft, but the selection of midfielder Nicola Barr hasn’t helped the Giants odds.
They are $9 outsiders, equal with Carlton and Brisbane on the last line of betting.
Barr, 20, said her selection as the top bill was “a big shock” after taking up the game only three years ago.
“I was playing a lot of soccer beforehand and I just went along with a school team one day and we all got together and started playing, and I’ve loved it ever since,” Barr said.
“Footy incorporates so many elements from different sports and that’s what I love about it.”
She joins veteran Renee Forth and young star Emma Swanson at the Giants.
The Western Bulldogs won the 2016 AFL Premiership and they are well in the money to do it in the women’s competition as well, rated a $5 second favourite with Sportsbet.com.au
The Dogs kept star Jamiee Lambert at the kennel with pick five, after she claimed the Susan Alberti award for her performances in the AFL Women’s Exhibition series in 2016.
The midfielder said she “couldn’t be happier than to be at the Bulldogs.”
The Dogs were the team keeping it local, picking up Aasta O’Connor and Hannah Scott, who had both previously played in the red, white and blue.
O’Connor said the draft was “a day of celebration for female football, and where the game is, and where it can go.”
“It’s really about what we can create as players (but) the hard work begins when you get to the club and you put your head down and start working, so I’m really looking forward to that.
“It’s really exciting for all clubs involved and the AFL.”
The Crows and Collingwood share the third line of betting at $6.
Next season’s women’s competition will feature six home and away rounds, with the top four playing two semi finals and a Grand Final.
The women’s Grand Final could be played in the week between the end of the NAB Challenge and the start of the AFL season, or as a curtain-raiser to the AFL season opener at the MCG on either a Thursday or Saturday night.
Women’s AFL 2017 Premiership market
Fremantle Dockers ($4.50)
Melbourne Demons ($4.50)
Western Bulldogs ($5)
Collingwood Magpies ($6)
Adelaide Crows ($6)
Brisbane Lions ($9)
Carlton Blues ($9)
Greater Western Sydney Giants ($9)
Odds provided by Sportsbet.com.au