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The luxury of Izzy

December 12, 2017 8:07 PM

AFL 2017 Media - NAB AFLW Draft

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 18: Number 1 pick Isabel Huntington of the Bulldogs poses for a photograph during the NAB AFLW Draft at NAB Arena on October 18, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media)

Fans hoping to see the Western Bulldogs’ number one draft pick Izzy Huntington roaming the forward line alongside Katie Brennan next season might be disappointed, initially at least.

Huntington has missed a year of football after rupturing her ACL in early 2017 but will be back into full training in the coming weeks according the Bulldogs coach Paul Groves.

The 18-year-old showed impressive versatility during her time at the Sandringham Dragons and Melbourne University, but has an exceptional pair of hands and is a proven goal kicker.  

But as to where she fits when she returns to football next season, Groves said that he’s looking at Huntington playing in different parts of the ground as she learns the ropes at the top level.  

“She’ll work in tandem with KB (Brennan), but I’m not sort of pigeon-holing her as a forward at the moment,” Groves told

“I want that flexibility with everyone in the group.” 

“We’ll explore everything over the next two months for every girl, but ‘Iz’, I can see her as a half-back-flank just finding her feet in this comp, centre half back, potentially, but then she can give you such a good marking target up forward.”

The benefit of having a player of Huntington’s capability coming off of half back is not lost of Groves, as they Dogs look to make an impact in the second AFLW season.

“It’ll be a nice luxury, having her float around,” he said.

“And she’s an elite kick, and we’re really looking for those elite foot skills off of half back”

The Bulldogs will open their season on Sunday, February 4 against Fremantle at VU Whitten Oval.