Pies' cross-code star joins Melbourne Victory

COLLINGWOOD AFLW star Sarah Rowe is swapping the oval ball for a round one - at least temporarily, joining A-League Women's club Melbourne Victory as an injury replacement player.

Melbourne Victory announced Rowe's signing on Friday morning.

Rowe has a strong background in soccer, representing her native Ireland at a youth and senior international level before her Gaelic football career took off.

The 27-year-old has played the past five AFLW seasons for the Magpies, but also found time to play a season of soccer for Shelbourne Ladies in the Irish Women's National League in 2021 in between AFLW seasons.

It is understood Rowe's Melbourne Victory commitments will not interfere with her playing availability for the 2023 AFLW season, with the A-League Women's season set to finish in late April and the AFLW season expected to commence later in the year.

Sarah Rowe celebrates a goal with Ash Brazill and Sabrina Frederick during the R6 clash between Collingwood and St Kilda at RSEA Park on October 1, 2022. Picture: Getty Images

Rowe shared a video of her training with Melbourne Victory players to her Instagram story on Wednesday.

Victory head coach Jeff Hopkins said Rowe had already impressed the club.

"We’re incredibly pleased to have an athlete like Sarah join the club and we’re excited to see what a natural talent like her can bring to our squad," Hopkins said.

"Sarah has been trialing with us and we’ve been impressed with her level and what she has to offer so we’re looking to see her hit the ground running at Victory."

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Rowe said she was excited to return to the sport.

"I’m thrilled to be able to join Melbourne Victory and be back playing football with Jeff and the team here at Victory," Rowe said.

"There is no doubt this group wants to achieve the ultimate success this season and I’m looking forward to contributing to their success any way I can."

Rowe will be available to play for Melbourne Victory against Perth Glory on Friday night, subject to international clearance.