Woods drafted to Bulldogs

Jemima Woods (Supplied)

Sarah Oliver

Bacchus Marsh’s Jemima Woods is one step closer to playing AFLW after signing on with the Western Bulldogs for season 2022.

Woods had been training with the Bulldogs and was elevated to the club’s list on Friday with Kirsten McLeod moving onto the inactive list due to ongoing concussion symptoms.

The 18-year-old is an athletic tall forward with clean hands, a strong work rate, and the ability to pinch-hit in the ruck.

The teen played for the Bulldogs in an intra club match, kicking three goals as well as playing in an AFLW practice match against North Melbourne.

Last year, Woods played for the Western Bulldogs in the VFLW on three occasions, kicking three goals on debut.

She was also one of a handful of NAB League players invited to attend the AFLW Draft Combine.

She is a former Western Jets player and Bulldogs’ Next Generation Academy graduate.

“Jemima is someone who has been involved with our program at the Dogs for quite a while now,” Bulldogs’ AFLW head of list management and recruiting, Mick Sandry, said.

“She is a young, developing talent who has thrived over the past couple of months as a train-on with our AFLW team.

“Her strong marking and ability to hit the scoreboard makes her a really exciting prospect for us this season.”

Woods told the Star Weekly last year that her AFL journey started with her involvement in Auskick about the age of five, followed by steady progress through her teens.

She said people’s attitudes to women’s football have come along in leaps and bounds during that time.

“It was so weird, when all the girls actually started playing and the AFLW took off it was suddenly cool to play now,” she said.

“That was a big change, all the girls were playing netball and basketball and stuff and now they’re playing footy as well.”

Woods said she still enjoys watching the elite men’s teams, but the chance to see women living out her dream at the top level is a real inspiration as well.

“It’s cool because earlier you just had to watch the boys play, which was cool as well, but watching the girls play you get more of an idea of what the game is like at that level.”