14/04/2024

Charlie Rowbottom was the first player selected in the AFLW Draft. (Photo: Gold Coast Suns/Twitter)

Charlie Rowbottom was picked by the Gold Coast Suns with pick one in the 2021 AFLW Draft after nominating for the Queensland zone.

Charlie Rowbottom has finally crossed the Ts and dotted the Is, officially a Gold Coast Sun.

The 178cm midfielder was tied to the club with its first selection after she nominated for the Queensland zone last week.

Renowned for her ability to play as both a contested midfielder and tall forward, Rowbottom looks to be a prototype of the future AFLW star.

Rowbottom came through the Oakleigh Chargers pathway in the NAB League, averaging 17.6 disposals, seven tackles, three inside 50s and kicking 10 goals in her 11 games.

When in the middle, she has the ability to both extract the footy through her contested work and also break out of the pack and find a clearance.

As a marking target, she can fly with the best of them. In a game against the Gippsland Power, she kicked two goals and took five marks.

Though she had already spoken to new coach Cameron Joyce earlier and the week and was all but certain to join the Gold Coast, the night was no less exciting.

“When the Gold Coast Suns came forward and had a chat to me, I was really keen and really excited to move up there into the sunshine for a bit of a change and a shift in my life, it’s very exciting,” Rowbottom told media on Tuesday night.

“I guess you never know until (your name) is called out, but it’s very exciting for it to finally happen and to finally be cemented.”

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Rowbottom joins the Suns alongside Suns academy members Teagan Levi and Giselle Davies, as well as Northern Territory product Ashanti Bush.

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Levi (L) and Davies (R). (Photo: Gold Coast Suns/Twitter)

With the four additions, the Suns list is beginning to take shape. They’ll be pushing to return back to their 2020 form after a winless 2021.

Bush will find herself slotting in nicely into the forward, known for her goal sense. Davies will join Lauren Ahrens and Jade Pregelj as a key defender in the backline, while Levi adds another layer to the Suns’ midfield rotations.

AFL General Manager of Women’s Football, Nicole Livingstone congratulated all players who nominated for the Draft and welcomed the 2021 draftees to the NAB AFL Women’s competition.

“The NAB AFLW Draft is one of the most exciting and anticipated days on the women’s football calendar,” Livingstone said.

“It is where we catch a glimpse of the future stars of our game, before they embark on their NAB AFL Women’s journey.

“To the young women, waiting patiently for their name to be called, congratulations on making it this far.  Playing in a national women’s footy competition was only a dream a few years ago, but now you are on the verge of possibly being drafted to an AFLW team, starting a pre-season, and very soon, playing in front of thousands of fans every week.

“We look forward to witnessing the next step in your women’s football journey and wish you the best of luck.”

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