DANGEROUS Western Bulldogs small forward Kirsten McLeod will miss the 2022 NAB AFLW season due to concussion.
The 27-year-old inaugural Bulldog did not feature in the side's practice match in December, and has been moved to the inactive list.
She will be replaced by young forward and train-on player Jemima Woods, who last year completed the NAB AFLW Combine 2km time trial in her driveway due to isolation.
"Time away from playing footy will allow me to make my health and wellbeing my number one priority," McLeod said.
"As much as I’m shattered to be missing the 2022 season, this break will allow me to build and work towards being as healthy and fit as possible for 2023 onwards."
2022 FIXTURE Every match, every round
Bulldogs head of women's footy Debbie Lee said McLeod will continue to be involved from the sidelines.
"We’re terribly disappointed we won’t see ‘Macca’ out on the field this season, but her health and wellbeing is paramount and obviously the number one priority here," Lee said.
"This break will give her the best chance not only to return to footy sooner, but most importantly to resume her day-to-day life too."
Woods, 18, is a product of NAB League side Western Jets and the Dogs' NGA program, and played in the Dogs' practice match against North Melbourne.
"[Jemima] is a young, developing talent who has thrived over the past couple of months as a train-on with our AFLW team," Bulldogs head of list management and recruiting Mick Sandry said.
"Her strong marking and ability to hit the scoreboard makes her a really exciting prospect for us this season."
The Bulldogs will not play this weekend due to insufficient numbers (a combination of injuries and AFL health and safety protocols), and have lost star key forward Izzy Huntington for the season with a torn ACL.
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