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AFLW selection: Three changes

An army of fans surprise Schleicher Hear from AFL Women's ruck Ruby Schleicher and her family as they react the 18 year old's first game as a Collingwood player against Carlton at Ikon Park on Friday.
Captain Stephanie Chiocci will be aiming to lead the Magpies to their first win of the AFLW season.

Collingwood has turned to experience to help bolster its line up for its second game of the AFL Women’s season on Saturday night.

Melissa Kuys, Penny Cula-Reid and Lou Wotton will each represent the Magpies for the first time when they run out against Melbourne at Ikon Park.

They replace the omitted Lauren Tesoriero, Ruby Schleicher and Helen Roden.

Tesoriero and Schleicher remain on standby as the two emergencies.

It’s been a long journey for each of the incoming trio, for each has been playing their trade in the VFLW competition for several years.

About the inclusions
Melissa Kuys
A hard-working and resilient midfielder, Kuys captained and was a stand out for VFLW club Knox in a poor 2016 season for the club. She is an excellent kick and her run-and-carry game will benefit from a strong program around her.

Penny Cula-Reid
Experienced small defender and captain of the St Kilda Sharks in the VFLW. Cula-Reid intercepts well and makes good decisions coming out of defence. She has been highly influential off-field in the development of the women's game.

Lou Wotton
A former triathlete who retired from footy in 2014 but decided to nominate for the draft after watching the 2016 exhibition series matches. An experienced ruck and twice a VWFL best-and-fairest. Extremely fit and won the club's 2km time trial.

Coach’s take
“It was great to have 27 players available again after we had several injuries on Friday night,” coach Wayne Siekman told Collingwood Media.

“There were four players on the bench at the end who couldn’t come back on, so our medical team has done a great job to ensure that they are all up and about and available to be selected again this week. I think the eight-day turnaround helped us.

Who are we up against?
“We have changed up the midfield to get a bit more impact and spread around the ground. Coming up against Melbourne, they have one of the best midfields in the competition with Daisy Pearce, Elise O’Dea and Karen Paxman and with Mel Hickey down back they have some top powerful players that win the footy and use it well, so we have to make sure that we match them in that area.”

Describe our debutants
“We’re bringing in Penny for her debut. He’s an outstanding decision maker and is one of the bets kicks in the team. Last week our disposal efficiency wasn’t great, so it was a pretty easy decision for us.

“Lou Wotton, who is part of our leadership group, will come into the ruck with Emma King. She has trained really hard last week since missing out and deserves the opportunity to play against her old side, that she played an exhibition game for.

“The third one is Mel Kuys, from Knox, who will strengthen us with her left foot which will add something a bit different, and something we didn’t have on Friday night. Hopefully those three changes make the result a different outcome on Saturday night.”

What we learned from last week
“Our effort at the contest was great. The first half was really physical, strong and aggressive at the football. We just didn’t get the rewards like Carlton got at the other end, and we went into half time at 4.1 to 1.4. It arguably could have been even. All the stats and KPIs that we had showed that we were right in the contest but we just didn’t take our chances.

“A couple of Carlton’s goals came from errors, so we just need to make sure that we’re a bit tidier with ball use and decisions in the middle and back half to make sure we don’t give easy goals to Melbourne this week. If we can do that, and make them accountable, hopefully it opens up a few more scoring avenues and hopefully we can kick eight or ten goals and get the win that we need.”

Collingwood v Melbourne
AFL Women’s Round Two
Saturday 11 February
Ikon Park, 7.40pm


Collingwood
B: Tara Morgan, Stacey Livingstone, Meg Hutchins
HB: Stephanie Chiocci, Nic Stevens, Cecilia McIntosh
C: Amelia Barden
HF: Jess Cameron, Jasmine Garner, Alicia Eva
F: Sarah D’Arcy, Moana Hope, Emma Grant
Foll: Emma King, Brittany Bonnici, Bree White
Int: Christina Bernardi, Lou Wotton, Penny Cula-Reid, Melissa Kuys, Sophie Casey, Caitlyn Edwards
Emg: Lauren Tesoriero, Ruby Schleicher

IN: Melissa Kuys, Penny Cula-Reid, Lou Wotton
OUT: Lauren Tesoriero (omitted), Ruby Schleicher (omitted), Helen Roden (omitted)