Ex-Roo joins star brother at Punt Road

DEFENDER Beth Lynch has been given an AFLW lifeline, joining brother Tom at Richmond.

The 24-year-old has been signed as a replacement player by the Tigers, who have moved the injury-prone Iilish Ross to the inactive list.

Ross – who has battled a series of serious foot and leg injuries since being drafted in 2017 – will miss the 2022 NAB AFLW season with a stress fracture in her lower leg.

Iilish Ross (left) and Poppy Kelly at Richmond training on November 8, 2021. Picture: AFL Photos

Formerly a netballer, Lynch started her football career with Richmond's VFLW side, before being signed to North Melbourne as an AFLW rookie in 2018.

The defender played eight games over three years, finding it tough to consistently break into the powerful Roos line-up, before her delisting at the end of the 2021 season.

Lynch has been a train-on player for Richmond this pre-season, and was a late call-up for the practice match loss to Geelong.

"We are very disappointed for Iilish, who has worked hard to overcome injury issues during her almost three years at the club," Richmond head of women’s football Kate Sheahan said.

"Based on the injuries timeline and Iilish’s history, we have made the decision together with her and our medical team to give the issue time to recover without the pressure of setting a return date for this AFLW season.

"We know that Beth will be able to slot in seamlessly. She was terrific in our practice match against Geelong and has prior AFLW and Richmond (VFLW) experience.

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"It is great to be able to bring Beth back home to Richmond and very special to have her and Tom playing at the elite level at the same club.

"Beth has worked very hard to get herself back onto an AFLW list and is fully deserving of another chance, which we are thrilled to be able to give her."

Lynch will wear No.32 for Richmond.