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Star AFLW forwards Chloe Molloy, Ash Woodland find new homes

Former Collingwood star Chloe Molloy has switched to Sydney for the 2023 AFLW season.

Former Collingwood star Chloe Molloy has switched to Sydney for the 2023 AFLW season. Photo: AAP

Talented forwards Chloe Molloy and Ash Woodland have found new homes on the opening day of the AFLW priority sign-and-trade period, joining Sydney and Port Adelaide respectively.

And Brisbane has lost premiership stars Emily Bates and Greta Bodey, who have both told the Lions they will leave to join rival clubs.

The pair have been linked to Hawthorn.

Port Adelaide struck a huge blow to local rivals Adelaide when it lured Woodland – a premiership player, All-Australian and former league-leading goalkicker – across town.

The 24-year-old will join Power for its second season in the women’s competition, joining fellow former Crows players Erin Phillips, Justine Mules and Ange Foley at Alberton.

“I’m really excited to be on board, to start a new adventure,” Woodland said in a club statement.

“I’m just excited to join a new team in the AFLW system.

“I want to take my game to the next level and build on my leadership skills with what I’ve learned on my journey so far.”

Port Adelaide has also been linked to Fremantle’s 2021 All-Australian defender Janelle Cuthbertson, who has informed the Dockers of her intention to join an expansion side.

Molloy’s forecast move to the Swans from Collingwood was the first confirmed when the player movement period opened on Wednesday.

The 24-year-old won the AFLW Rising Star award, a club best-and-fairest and two All-Australian jumpers during a successful stint with the Magpies.

“I’ve had six seasons in the AFLW and if I’m being honest, I never pictured myself in the red and white, but have to admit it does look good,” Molloy said in a club statement.

“The way I was evolving as a player and as a person it led me to Sydney, and I was really drawn to the Swans.

“I’m eternally grateful for Collingwood and how they turned me into a person that I’m proud to be.”

Molloy already has a strong relationship with Sydney coach Scott Gowans, who spent time as an assistant at Collingwood.

Bates was the Lions’ first AFLW draft pick and a key contributor to Brisbane’s extended success since the competition’s inception.

The 27-year-old was rewarded with the W Medal in season six as the league’s best player.

Bates departs as a three-time All-Australian, triple best-and-fairest winner and the winner of the AFLCA Champion Player and AFLPA MVP awards in 2022.

Bodey was recognised with All-Australian honours in season seven and was runner-up in the club’s best and fairest in season six.

Both played in Brisbane’s inaugural Premiership win in 2021.

The AFLW priority sign and trade period runs until March 8 and is open to the four newest clubs in the competition – Essendon, Hawthorn, Port Adelaide and Sydney.

Following that, the AFLW sign and trade period for the remaining 14 clubs runs from March 10 to 20.

-AAP

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