NEW AFLW club Sydney and Greater Western Sydney are on the hunt for the next wave of female footballing talent in New South Wales and the ACT.
The Swans enter the NAB AFLW competition in the 2022-23 season, and given the competition is currently part-time, the vast majority of players are drafted in their home state.
The two clubs and AFL NSW/ACT have joined forces to create the Women's Summer Series, to be played in February 2022.
Each club will have two teams representing it (four in total), with the five-week competition set to see 120 players take to the field.
It also will provide an alternative football game for AFLW-listed GWS players who aren't selected to play at the top level in that particular week.
"It takes a tremendous amount of effort to build a quality list from scratch, and the Women’s Summer Series will bring NSW and ACT footballers together to compete to be the best," Sydney EGM of AFLW Kate Mahony said.
"This series is a step closer to creating history at the club, as we look to forming a competitive AFLW team.
"It will be incredibly exciting to watch the series discover future AFLW athletes from across local competitions, as they chase their dream of pulling on the red and white guernsey. We’re looking forward to scouting as many future Swans athletes as possible."
While state league competitions in other states have been brought forward to run concurrently with the AFLW competition, the AFL Sydney competition has remained as a winter competition, meaning unselected GWS players have had to train on game day.
"The introduction of the Women’s Summer Series allows us, for the first time, to have an underpinning competition for those not selected to play at AFLW level," said GWS head of women's football Briana Harvey.
"This is an incredibly important addition to our AFLW program and it’s great that pathway now exists in season six.
"It’s also a great opportunity for our train-on players, Academy athletes and other players across NSW and the ACT to be part of a development program as they work towards playing at the elite level."