In a boost to female coaching ranks, a string of AFLW players have taken the next step to a coaching career after being selected for the AFL’s Women’s Coaching Acceleration Program.
Port Adelaide’s marquee player Erin Phillips has recently been selected for the program, which was launched back in 2021 to help create a pathway for women looking to coach across the AFL men’s and women’s competitions.
Those that were successful in making the program will be able to take up a coaching role for a minimum of two years between now and 2025. This will see Phillips take up a coaching role at the club she recently signed to for the upcoming AFLW season.
Joining Phillips in the coaching development program is Melbourne’s Daisy Pearce who has taken up a role with Geelong. The announcement of Pearce joining the program follows her stint which has recently seen her as an assistant with the NAB AFLW Academy. Both Phillips and Pearce will make up the nine positions that are on offer through the program.
Phillips and Pearce are among the four players currently playing in the AFLW to have been granted a position in the program. GWS’ player Alicia Eva and Adelaide’s Chelsea Randall are the other names who have been granted a spot in the program and currently play in the league.
Eva will take on a role with GWS where she’s already had previous coaching experience with the Giants’ VFL side, Giants Academy and has coached the boys AFL Academy in June last year.
Meanwhile, Randall will become the first female coach when she joins the Adelaide Football Club men’s team full time this year.
The four AFLW players join several star-studded names who have already been appointed in coaching roles within the league.
Former Brisbane Lions player Emma Zielke is an assistant to Brisbane’s AFLW side, while Chloe McMillan is a senior coach for Collingwood’s VFLW side. Natalie Wood was recently announced as Essendon’s AFLW senior coach and Bec Goddard is a senior coach for Hawthorn’s AFLW side.
North Melbourne is yet to announce who will take the final of the nine positions.
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