K rock Football

Hickey to lead Cats again

Captain Mel Hickey (front) with fellow Geelong AFLW player leadership group members Jordy Ivey, Meg McDonald, Renee Garing and Aasta O’Connor. (Geelong Cats Image)

ALL-Australian Meg McDonald is among two new faces in Geelong’s AFLW leadership group for the 2020 season.

The 28-year-old winner of the inaugural AFLW best-and-fairest and Jordy Ivey have been elected to the five-member group that will again be led by Mel Hickey.

McDonald, who played four matches with the Western Bulldogs in 2017, has also been named vice-captain.

The group, which has one less member than 2019, also features returning duo Renee Garing and Aasta O’Connor.

Bec Goring, who was vice-captain last year and skippered Geelong in its AFLW debut with Hickey sidelined, star midfielder Rocky Cranston, and veteran defender Anna Teague have gone out of the group.

“The players have done a lot of work together across the pre-season in setting expectations around our values, which formed the basis for the players when voting in the player leadership group,” head of football Simone Bellears said.

“We are pleased to have finalised the AFLW player leadership group for 2020. It’s fantastic to see Melissa Hickey continue as captain; we know that her passion and leadership qualities will continue to unite the group going forward.

“We are also excited to see Meg McDonald named as vice-captain, recognition of the significant impact she has had on our playing group in such a short amount of time.

“Her impact on-field speaks for itself, and her impact off-field has been just as significant.”

Geelong will play a practice match against the Western Bulldogs on January 24 before opening its second AFLW campaign with a trip across the Nullarbor for a meeting with Fremantle on February 9.

Twitter: @tom_king79