The disciplinary rules of the AFLW are about to change after Western Bulldogs captain Katie Brennan and AFL announced they had resolved their difference from her two-match suspension saw her miss the AFLW Grand Final.
Along with this, the AFL acknowledged that the sanctions established for the AFLW differs from the men’s game, which was established in good faith and consultation along with the agreement of players through the AFLPA in 2016.
In a post-season review by the AFL into the AFLW season, the AFL will amend the differences in the sanctions to ensure AFLW players are not more likely to be suspended than men for identical conduct with identical disciplinary records.
The AFL will also take a broader review of all aspects of the game in the coming months with Brennan to be included in the consultation process.
"Our decisions are based on what is best for the growth, sustainability and popularity of the national women’s league,” AFL General Counsel Andrew Dillon said..
“While creating something new and different, there will always be challenges and in-turn opportunities to improve.
"The post-season review gives us that opportunity in respect to the AFLW and broader league initiatives,” he said.
The decision also means Brennan will be free to play in the first game of 2019.
“I am delighted the AFL has taken the time and responded to review and adjust the rules," she said.
"The decision to push for change in the rules at this vital time of development reflects the passion I have for the game and the future generations of our sport.
"The competition is still in its early days and that means it requires appropriate care and support for the growth and sustainability,” Brennan said.