The Inner Sanctum's AFLW Team of the Week, Round 9. (Design: Will Cuckson)

The Inner Sanctum has put together a team of the week comprised of the best performing players in Round 9 of the 2022 AFLW season.

The Inner Sanctum has put together a team of the week comprised of the best performing players in Round 9 of the 2022 AFLW season.

Defenders are rewarded for their defensive play, midfielders receive accolades for their dominance, while forwards receive a shout-out for hitting the scoreboard and applying pressure.

For the first time in a long time, every team played one game this round. You can read last week’s team here.

Katie Lynch didn’t let the West Coast forwards near the footy, gathering 18 disposals while taking eight crucial marks. Averaging 4.9 marks (equal third in the competition), 4.9 intercept possessions and 2.5 rebound 50s, she’s been a stalwart of the Dogs all year long. Rebecca Miller barely put a defensive foot wrong in her match up with Rebecca Privitelli, taking a game high seven marks.

Maddie Shevlin was a driving force off the half back line, gathering 17 disposals, taking four marks, and even getting forward to kick a goal. Ruby Schleicher was by far and away the best Magpie, finishing with a career-best 31 disposals and 10 marks. She was the reason they got so close to the top of the table Crows, and has all but locked in an All-Australian spot. We’re losing count of how many times Gab Pound has graced the TOTW, but her rebounding game has shone all year long.

It’s hard to believe Mimi Hill spent 12 months on the sidelines, and only just played her 11th AFLW game. Had she been available from the start, the dashing winger would be in line for the Rising Star. Tilly Lucas-Rodd has been the standout Saints all season long, and delivered again with 22 disposals, 12 clearances, and 10 tackles. Karen Paxman has come to life after a slow start, this week getting forward and kicking two goals along with her 17 disposals.

Lauren Pearce and Breann Moody are going to be fighting for the All-Australian ruck spot, but this week, with 21 disposals, 18 hit outs, and seven clearances, she takes the cake. Eliza West has been a revelation in her first season, playing every game so far and finishing with seven clearances and a career-high 24 disposals (12 contested) in the demolition of Fremantle. Rebecca Beeson has been sorely missed in the middle for the Giants, and showed just why she is one of the competition’s premier midfielders with a 31 disposal masterclass in the loss to the Tigers.

Brooke Lochland has hit her stride since returning to the Bulldogs, kicking three goals and looking as lively as ever. Kate Hore was the capstone on a clinical forward showing by the record-breaking Demons, contributing three goals to the AFLW’s first ever triple figure score. Eliza James brought the spark when Collingwood had none, kicking two jaw-dropping goals to keep her side in the game.

Tayla Harris has got her fingers wrapped around the goalkicking trophy, kicking three (alongside nine marks) to finish the round one ahead of Adelaide’s Ashleigh Woodland. Daisy Pearce wound back the clock to her VWFL days, kicking a competition season-high bag of five. She’s often been Harris’ little mate this season, but this week, she was the focal point.

Milestone woman Ebony Marinoff was a force to be reckoned with as always in the middle, taking advantage of the understrength Collingwood midfield. Nat Grider has become one of the best rebounding defenders in the competition, and in a game where the Lions backline didn’t see much of the footy, she made all her touches count. In her record-breaking 50th game alongside teammate Emily Bates, Ally Anderson was a defensive force in the middle, laying 11 tackles. Kirsty Lamb has the Bulldogs’ best and fairest in the bag, in another complete midfield game. Dockers captain Hayley Miller can hold her head high despite the devastating loss, leading her team from the front all night long.

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