The Irish AFLW contingent is set to receive a significant increase in their pay levels, with salaries set to increase by 94 per cent across the league for the upcoming season.
The joint announcement by the AFL and the organization representing Aussie Rules players, the AFLPA, confirmed that a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) had been completed for the seventh season of the AFLW.
According to the press release, “The increased pay contract will ensure that the average salary for all 540 players across 18 clubs increases 94 percent from $23,904 to $46,280, with AFLW players playing 10 home and away games and four Endgames (an additional final contest than in the sixth season).
Players on Tier 1 contracts will earn $71,935 (€47,841) for the upcoming season, where they previously earned $37,155 (€24,710).
At the lower end, Tier 4 contracts are now worth $39,184 (€26,059) versus $20,239 (€20,239).
Only eight players per club occupy the top two ranks.
Next year there will be an expanded league.
The seventh season of AFLW now begins on the last weekend of August and consists of ten home and away rounds and a four-week finals series, with the Grand Final taking place on the last weekend of November.
The addition of four new clubs – Essendon, Hawthorn, Port Adelaide and Sydney – means the number of professional players will increase from 420 to 540, leading to speculation of an increased recruitment drive among GAA players.
Meath star and reigning Footballer of the Year Vikki Wall is expected to sign a contract in the next few weeks.
In Australia it has been reported Wall will sign for North Melbourne who currently have Mayo player Aideen Gilroy on their books and Cork prospect Erika O’Shea will join the ranks of Irish players in Oz.
The potential “talent drain” of top inter-county players has been a concern for many in the LGFA, and with the new schedule and vastly improved conditions, the number of players switching codes is likely to increase rapidly.
The Mayo Senior Ladies Panel’s recent announcement revealed that of her number in Australia, only Rachel Kearns would be involved in the 2022 All-Ireland SFC.
Sarah Rowe, Niamh and Grace Kelly and Gilroy were all missing from the list.
Last year there were 14 Irish representatives in the AFLW.
An expansion signing period begins on May 24th, with the signing and trading period starting on May 31st.
https://www.independent.ie/sport/gaelic-games/ladies-football/average-aflw-salaries-to-increase-by-94pc-for-coming-season-as-increased-recruitment-drive-is-expected-here-41666451.html Average AFLW salaries are set to rise 94 percent for the coming season as an intensified recruitment drive is expected