Melissa Hickey (Geelong Cats)

The former Melbourne marquee player and inaugural Geelong Skipper has made the decision to hang up the boots after pioneering the women’s league and having an illustrious career across the VFLW and the AFLW. Hickey played 25 AFLW games with Melbourne and Geelong, reaching the milestone in the game against North Melbourne in Round 6.

Hickey was chosen to be one of two Melbourne marquee players alongside Daisy Pearce. She played 13 games in the red and blue before making the move down the highway to Geelong during the expansion period at the end of 2018.

Before the AFLW was established, Hickey played 107 games for the Darebin Falcons and was a part of their premiership team in 2009-2010 and again in 2013-2017. Hickey was also named in the AFLW All-Australian team back in 2017.

Emma Grant (Collingwood Magpies)

Grant, one of Collingwood’s foundation players, announced her retirement last Wednesday. She played 20 games in the black and white, including the historic first ever game of AFLW back in 2017, but unfortunately missed out on the 2020 season due to an injury sustained at the start of the year. Grant was Collingwood’s vice-captain for both the 2018 and 2019 seasons.

Nicole Callinan (Western Bulldogs)

Bulldogs foundation player Nicole Callinan announced her retirement on the 19th of March this year. Callinan played 24 games for the Dogs, including the famous 2018 Premiership game that won them the flag. She was a part of the Bulldogs’ leadership group for three seasons. Before the AFLW was created, Callinan won four premierships with the Darebin Falcons in the VFLW and represented Australia in indoor Cricket.

Lauren Tesoriero (Richmond Tigers)

Tesoriero played her first two seasons of AFLW with Collingwood alongside Emma Grant in the historic first match of AFLW against Carlton back in 2017. Tesoriero joined the Tigers in 2018 as a VFLW player before becoming the women’s recruiter at the club. 

Tesoriero was drafted to the Tigers to be a part of their Inaugural team and leadership group as deputy vice-captain in 2019, with Pick 96 in the draft.  She managed to play four games for the Tigers, despite not having an ACL after opting against surgery.

Laura Bailey (Richmond Tigers)

Bailey played 14 games in her AFLW career, tallying eight games in two seasons for the Bulldogs before joining Richmond’s VFLW program in 2018. She was then drafted to the club in the 2019 draft, joining the club’s inaugural side for the 2020 season and going on to play six matches.

Emma Mackie (St Kilda Saints)

Mackie played nine games in her career. She played seven games at the Bulldogs over two seasons before making the switch to fulfil a childhood dream to play for St Kilda. A lifelong Saints supporter, Mackie unfortunately only played two games for the side, one of those being the exciting team debut down in Moorabbin.