With the 2023 AFLW home & away season reaching its halfway point, SUNS Media have taken a look at how your favourite SUNS stars are stacking up against the rest of the competition.
Stanno’s hot start
Highlighted by a record-breaking six goals in Round 2, Jamie Stanton’s had an impressive start to the season in front of goals with multiple majors kicked in three of the five matches to date so far. She sits second in the league (12 goals) two goals behind Melbourne’s Kate Hore (14).
Tara Bohanna and Jac Dupuy also find themselves in the league’s top bunch, sitting in equal 12th with seven goals apiece. Dupuy is also one of three SUNS players to have kicked goals in four separate matches this season alongside Stanton and Jordan Membrey.
The ball winning prowess of Charlie Rowbottom and Claudia Whitfort is no secret, but it’s been of full display throughout the opening five rounds. Both players sit inside the league’s top 10 for disposals (Rowbottom 7th; 133, Whitforrt 9th; 128), clearances (Rowbottom 2nd; 41, Whitfort 7th; 31) and ground ball gets (Whitfort 6th; 46, Rowbottom 9th; 45). Rowbottom also leads the league for contested possessions while Whitfort’s 25 Inside 50s is the third-most recorded across the AFLW, resulting in a league-high seven goal assists.
SUNS Academy product Lucy Single has also taken her game to another level in 2023. Creating headaches for opposition both with and without the ball, she’s seventh in the competition for tackles (45) and equal sixth for tackles inside 50 (11).
New recruits’ impact
Each of the SUNS eight pre-season additions have earned game time so far in 2023 with numerous making immediate impacts. In defence, Meara Girvan has been impassable for opposition sides, regularly plugging gaps and sending the SUNS forward - she sits equal third (39) in the competition for intercept possessions.
As little surprise to many, Niamh McLaughlin’s dashing runs off half-back throughout the opening rounds makes her the only player to have recorded 10 or more bounces so far this season.
They’ve been key cogs in the SUNS wheel for a number of years now as the only two players to have played every game for the club, but Lauren Ahrens and Lauren Bella are making their presence felt in 2023.
Ahrens leads the SUNS in one percenters (18), also closely followed by Bella (15) who’s been supplying the SUNS midfield with quality ball from ruck contests. She’s fifth in thee AFLW for hitouts-to-advantage (36) and eighth for total hitouts (102).
What can’t she Du-puy?
Jac Dupuy’s has continued to show why she’s one of the AFLW’s most versatile players, particularly inside forward 50. Having kicked seven goals across four of the five matches to date so far, she leads the SUNS for both marks inside 50 (8th in the league; 10) and ground-ball-gets inside forward 50 (4th in the league; 14).
AFLW Fantasy watch
Rowbottom and Whitfort continue to beat the SUNS’ highest-averaging players but it’s a former Club Champion who offers substantial value. On the back of a 95-point display against the Crows, Alison Drennan is available for more than $300k less than her starting price and is owned by just 1.2% of teams.