For a time, it seemed the closest Tyanna Smith would get to making it onto a footy field was running through a West Coast banner when she was just eight years old. Fast-forward almost a decade, and the runner-up in last year’s best and fairest made waves as part of St Kilda’s lively midfield brigade. A seamless addition to the Saints’ young engine room, the pick No.6 from the 2020 NAB AFL Women’s Draft dazzled across all nine games with her lightning pace, clean skills and uncompromising pressure. Smith's physicality and crunching tackles acted as an excellent foil to her clean disposal, which earned her numerous plaudits by season's end. While playing as an inside midfielder in her debut season due to the losses of Olivia Vesely and Nat Exon throughout the season, a shift outside to the wing – as seen for the Southern Saints in the back half of 2021 – could add to her well-established skillset.
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