The Gold Coast SUNS will assist a number of players in identifying further opportunities in the AFLW throughout the upcoming AFLW Trade Period.

Vice-captain Bess Keaney and foundation player Lauren Ahrens have both expressed a desire to return to Victoria.

Keaney, a two-time Most Professional Award recipient who joined the club ahead of the 2021 season and has held the position as vice-captain for the last three seasons, has expressed a desire to return to Melbourne for family reasons.

The SUNS will also facilitate further opportunities for small forward and foundation player Kalinda Howarth as she looks for a fresh start recovering from an ACL injury suffered earlier this year.

“Recently Bess informed us she was keen to return to Victoria to be closer to family. I know that was a difficult decision for her as she wanted to remain a SUNS player,” GC SUNS Head Coach Cameron Joyce said.

“She has been a leader and improved her footy over the last few years to become a very consistent AFLW player. I want to thank Bess for all her dedication and support over her time at the club.

“What I love about Lauren is she’s an ultra competitor who has done a number of big jobs for us on quality players in defence. We wish her all the best for what’s next.

“Kalinda is another of our inaugural players whose footy brain and game understanding is second to none. We wish her all the best in her recovery from injury and what’s next for her.”

The AFLW Trade Period concludes on Thursday, December 14.