Horsham footballer Ella Friend will be joining St Kilda's AFLW squad, after the Saints selected her with pick four in the AFLW Draft on Tuesday night.
The 17-year-old was St Kilda's first pick of the night and will be familiar with the team's colours and logo after playing her junior football at the Horsham Saints.
At 175cm Friend can play in a number of positions and was considered to be one of the best contested-marks in her draft class. This year for Vic Country and the GWV Rebels she played at both ends of the field, as well as on the wing, where her classy left boot was put to good use.
Former AFLW player and current coach of the Vic Country under 19 AFLW team Melissa Hickey was full of praise for Friend.
"Just a fantastic character a real bubbly personality and a great person to have in your team," she said on the AFLW Draft livestream.
"Very versatile as well, played a bit of time up on the wing and also down back. I think she even played some time forward for the Rebels so incredibly versatile.
"Strong over-head mark, great size at 175cm, really athletic.
"I think she'll be a great attribute for St Kilda."
Friend's selection means there are now four Horsham-raised players on AFLW lists; Sophie Alexander (Collingwood), Maggie Caris (Melbourne) and Rene Caris (Geelong).
Charlie Rowbottom was selected by the Gold Coast Suns at pick one, after surprising pundits recently when she nominated QLD (rather than her home state Victoria) as the state she wished to be drafted to. Because of the part-time nature of the AFLW, players nominate a state they wish to be drafted in.
The draft was conducted via stream because of the various lockdowns around the country.
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