NT Thunder Football Club is excited to announce the first four VFL Women’s (VFLW) signings for 2019, with NTFL Women’s Grand Final captains, Lateesha Jeffrey and Lisa Roberts leading the way once more.
Joining ‘Lala’ and ‘Robbo’ are their respective teammates, Tayla Thorn and Amy Chittick, with today’s announcement coming just ahead of the VFLW team’s first training session on Monday night.
Less than a fortnight ago the talented quartet went into battle against one another, with Roberts leading her Waratah players to another NTFL premiership, asserting the team’s dominance with seven of the last eight.
On the day, she picked up the Williams Medal for being best on ground, her second in only six seasons, which also added to the Gwynne Medal she shared in the 2017/18 season for being the best and fairest player in the League.
At just 21-years-old, Waratah’s Chittick added to her premiership medal with an individual accolade when she claimed the NTFL Women’s Premier League Leading Goalkicker Award this season for her 25 goals.
Another young gun of the local competition, Thorn, like Chittick has risen through the underage NT-representative ranks but was also a member of the national diversity program and in 2017 played four games with the Adelaide Crows in its inaugural AFLW season.
In the NTFL Women’s Premier League Grand Final Thorn was considered one of the best players for Southern Districts, showing her ability to play in all positions and all conditions.
Jeffrey, the leader of Southern Districts, was a big driver behind the club’s positive culture and rise in fortunes this past NTFL season. With a name synonymous with Territory and national football, Jeffrey first represented the NT as a senior on the national stage in 2011.
Recognised by her peers for showing great determination, especially in overcoming an ankle injury at the beginning of the 2018 VFLW season, Jeffrey was voted onto the inaugural ThunderW leadership group.
Roberts was also shown resounding support by her peers when she was elected as the club’s vice-captain for 2018.
Between them, the four have 35 games of experience after one season at VFLW level and will be looking to build on it in 2019.
ThunderW Head Coach, Heidi Thompson, who has been scouting all the players over the past couple of months, said Chittick had been in great form.
“Amy is an exciting young talent who can play as an outside midfielder and small forward, as she finds herself in space often and has an elite kick. She also had an outstanding NTFL season.
“Her attack on the ball and willingness to further her skills is really pleasing, and I am looking forward to seeing where she can take her footy in the VFLW this year.”
On Jeffrey, Thompson said she was a natural leader with the skill to match;
“Lala is an excellent addition to the NT Thunder VFLW squad this year, with her reliable kick and ability to read the play and intercept the footy in defence.
“After a successful NTFL season, she will also offer plenty in the leadership department as she is an exceptional role model for younger players coming through the system.”
Thompson also spoke highly of Roberts’ leadership style but said she was enthused by her desire to keep bettering herself.
“Robbo is a fantastic addition to the NT Thunder VFLW squad as she will drive standards through her high work ethic and excellent leadership skills.
“She is athletic and provides plenty of run with her elite endurance, and I’m looking forward to seeing her game develop further in 2019.”
And it was Thorn’s ability to stamp herself on a contest that had Thompson singing her praises.
“I am excited to have Tayla commit to the NT Thunder VFLW squad for 2019.
“She has a real presence out on the field with a strong body in a contest and her tackling pressure proving invaluable during the NTFL season. Her ability to run and carry after busting through a contest means she can provide versatility rebounding from defence and providing a tall target in the forward line,” she said.
The first official training session for the ThunderW squad is this Monday 25 March 2019, with more player signings to be announced over the coming weeks.
Fans that sign up for NT Thunder membership will get access to all home games for both of our NEAFL and VFLW NT Thunder teams, plus plenty more in the membership pack! Visit: www.ntthunder.com.au/membership
Round 1 of the Swisse Wellness VFLW season is Sunday 12 May against Hawthorn at Box Hill City Oval.