Latest News


Thursday, December 17, 2020 - 8:15 AM

Woodvale Primary School and Allendale Primary School will be running out in new football jumpers when they take to the field in 2021, after winning their respective categories of the 2020 Design a Jumper Competition.

A significant number of high-quality entries were received from all over Western Australia this year, with many teachers promoting the competition to their students during the “learning from home” period we were faced with earlier in the year.  The winning schools of both the metropolitan and regional categories are presented with a full set of new football jumpers in their winning designs.

WAFC Schools Specialist Regan Atkinson thanked Burley Sekem for their continued support of the competition.

“The competition has been very popular with schools for many years now and it continues to grow. It is a great way to link Australian Football with the classroom and provides children with an opportunity to show their artistic side and develop their school spirit.”

Year Six student Oliver Newham’s design was influenced by the local kangaroos and wetlands of Yellagonga Regional Park, whilst using the school colours and emblem to create a new Woodvale Primary School jumper that proved extremely popular with the judges.





The Allendale Primary School jumper was the creation of Lolittah Tarapu (Year Six), whose design was based around using Aboriginal artwork to reflect a meeting place for boys and girls to play football.  She also had a strong focus on using the colours of her Geraldton-based school.






The Design a Jumper Competition will be back again in 2021, where we hope to see many more quality entries such as those of Oliver’s and Lolittah’s.

2021 Optus WAFL Season Update

Wednesday, December 16, 2020 - 8:35 PM

The 2021 Optus WAFL Premiership Season is set to commence on the Easter weekend in April, with a fixture to be finalised early in the new year. 

The fixture will revert back to a 21-round-home-and-away season inclusive of byes, with each team to play each other twice before the finals series. 

The West Coast Eagles will return to the WAFL in 2021, with 10 teams competing for the Optus WAFL Premiership. 

The traditional top-five will return, seeing the best teams battle it out over a four-week finals series, with the Optus WAFL Grand Final date and venue yet to be confirmed.  

A number of rules will be implemented in 2021, headlined by the quarter length returning to 20 minutes in line with the AFL changes. 

The location of the mark at kick-ins will move to 15-metres towards the centre of the ground, while the defending player will only be permitted to stand (or jump up and down vertically) on a fixed location denoting the mark as directed by the umpire or receive a 50-metre penalty. 

WAFC Executive Manager – WAFL & Talent, Scott Baker said the timing of the fixture release could vary depending on the format of the AFL fixture for 2021. 

“At this point in time, our intention is to release fixtures for the Optus WAFL and WAFLW seasons at the end of January,” Baker said.

“The 21-round-home-and-away season continues to provide the fairest fixture as well as creating a highly-competitive and exciting state league competition here in WA.”

“We are extremely excited about the upcoming season with a number of players returning to the WAFL from the AFL. The inclusion of these talented players will take the competition to a new level in 2021.”

 “West Coast returning to the competition will no doubt add another layer of interest to the 2021 season.” 

“We also want to acknowledge the commitment of all WAFL players in this most recent season, in what was a very challenging environment, with salary cap cuts and a shorter competition.”

“The players in particular and everyone at WAFL clubs should be commended for their commitment in the role they played in getting a season completed in 2020.”

The 2021 Optus WAFLW Premiership Season start date will shift to the weekend of February 20 & 21. 

The change to an earlier start has been made to allow for recent changes by the AFL, with the AFLW U19s National Championships brought forward to the April school holidays and the AFLW Combine and AFLW Draft being moved to late July 2021. 

The competition will remain at six teams, allowing for a 15-round-home-and-away fixture with two byes, with each team playing each other three times.  

“The changes to the Optus WAFLW season allow our female talent pathway athletes to be extremely well prepared prior to the U19 AFLW National Championships,” Baker said.

“Running concurrently to the AFLW season also gives a boost to the competition, with AFLW players able to play in a premier state league competition when not selected at AFLW level.”

“The players are still be able to return to the Optus WAFLW competition at the back end of the season, once their AFLW commitments are completed.”

West Perth Women’s have been granted a provisional license for the 2021 season, before making the transition to the Optus WAFLW League competition in 2022. 

The Women’s fixture will be released in January 2021.  

WAFC congratulates AFL Draftees

Thursday, December 10, 2020 - 2:07 PM

Congratulations to the 11 Western Australian players added to AFL lists via the 2020 AFL National and Rookie Drafts.
These included first round selections Logan McDonald (PFC), Denver Grainger-Barras (SDFC) and Heath Chapman (WPFC).
Other National Draft selections included Simply Energy WA State Academy players Nathan O’Driscoll (PFC), Shannon Neale (SFFC), Jack Carroll (EFFC), Tyler Brockman (SFC), Brandon Walker (EFFC), Joel Western (CFC) and Isiah Winder (PTFC).
Swan Districts midfielder Zane Trew was the only WA selection in the Rookie Draft on Thursday.
WA State Talent Manager Adam Jones congratulated all of the players on their selection and paid tribute to their clubs, coaches and family members for their support during an extremely challenging season.
“These are all very talented players who have been rewarded for their dedication and commitment in particularly challenging circumstances during 2020,” Jones said.
“It is a credit to the Schools, Junior & WAFL clubs, coaches and family members for their support in helping each individual reach their dream of being drafted into the AFL.”
“For the players that missed out, there is plenty of opportunity within the AFL to be picked up outside of the Draft and I encourage them to return to their WAFL clubs and continue to work hard towards their goal.”
2020 AFL National Draft 
4 – Logan McDonald (Perth) – Sydney
6 – Denver Grainger-Barras (Swan Districts) – Hawthorn
14 – Heath Chapman (West Perth) – Fremantle
27 – Nathan O’Driscoll (Perth) – Fremantle
33 – Shannon Neale (South Fremantle) – Geelong
41 – Jack Carroll (East Fremantle) – Carlton
46 – Tyler Brockman (Subiaco) – Hawthorn
50 – Brandon Walker (East Fremantle) – Fremantle
54 – Joel Western (Claremont) – Fremantle
57 – Isiah Winder (Peel Thunder) – West Coast
2020 AFL Rookie Draft
12 – Zane Trew (Swan Districts) – West Coast

2020 WAFC End of Year Summary

Monday, December 7, 2020 - 9:08 AM

In 2020, it was a year like no other for Football in Western Australia. 

The state was fortunate to be able to commence and finish a 2020 Football Season and the results were promising. 

Review all the key moments and statistics in the End of Year Summary below. 


2020 WAFC End of Year Summary

Review of the WAFC's Constitution relating to Governance and the Election of Commissioners

Monday, December 7, 2020 - 8:58 AM

A paper has been written reviewing the WAFC's Constitution relating to Governance and the Election of Commissioners. 

Issues have been raised by Affiliated Associations, some WAFL Clubs, the Legislative Assembly Public Accounts Committee Report dated 12 November 2020 (LAPAC Report) and the WAFC itself. 

The paper does not seek to assess the validity or merits of the issues or to suggest proposals for amendment to the current WAFC Constitution which may address those issues.

It is intended to achieve these objectives through the written submission, consultation and meeting process which will follow the release of this paper, as outlined below.


WAFC Commissioner Election Results

Thursday, December 3, 2020 - 11:28 AM

The results of the elections for Commissioners of the West Australian Football Commission were endorsed last night, Wednesday 2 December 2020, at a meeting of WA Football stakeholders.
Commissioner Brian O’Donnell was reappointed for three years, while Ian Callahan, Phil Lamb and Dixie Marshall were appointed as new Commissioners for a term of three years.
WAFC Chairman Hon. Wayne Martin congratulated all Commissioners on their appointment and thanked the voting members for their support throughout the process.
“The WAFC is excited to attract these quality individuals to join the Commission and play a part in supporting the growth and development of football in Western Australia,” Mr Martin said.
“I look forward to working with Brian for a further three years and welcome Ian, Phil and Dixie as new Commissioners as we embark on an exciting and challenging next chapter for football.”
“I would like to thank everyone who nominated for this election and wish them all the best for the future.”
Neil Randall has concluded his tenure after serving nine years as a Commissioner between 2012 and 2020.
Chris Cottier did not nominate for re-election as a Commissioner after serving a three-year term from 2018 to 2020.
Grant Dorrington was not re-elected after serving a six-year term from 2015 to 2020.
“Neil, Chris and Grant have given a tremendous amount to football over their time as Commissioners and I personally thank them for their contribution to the game,” Mr Martin said.
The newly endorsed Commissioners will begin on January 1, 2021.
Brian O’Donnell
Re-appointed for a 3-year term from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2023
Brian has been a Commissioner of the WAFC since January 2018 and completes his first three-year term in December 2020. During his current term on the WAFC, he has served on the Finance, Funding and Commercial Committee and the Risk and Governance Committee.
Before joining the WAFC, Brian was as a Director of Fremantle Football Club for 10 years, including the Club’s most successful period to date. He has also served in various community sport roles, including as a junior cricket coach, junior football team manager, and Secretary of East Fremantle Cricket Club.
Brian has over 30 years’ experience in the finance and investment industry. He is currently Finance and Investments Director for the Australian Capital Equity (ACE) Group, with overall responsibility for all finance facilities and lender relationships for the Group, as well as responsibility for investment assessment, execution and management.
Brian’s qualifications and experience in football, finance and business, including the last three years on the WAFC, enable him to continue to make a valuable contribution to the Commission in providing guidance to all levels of the game and work with all football stakeholders.
Ian Callahan
Appointed for a 3-year term from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2023
Ian brings considerable commercial and financial experience to his role as WAFC Commissioner. This is complimented by an understanding of football gained through previous service roles, playing and umpiring in several of the football competitions in Western Australia and being an ongoing member and supporter of football clubs at multiple levels of the football system. Currently Chief Operating Officer at Curtin University, Ian has a broad commercial knowledge, skill base and experience gained from CEO, COO and CFO roles across a variety of industries. He has also held director roles in public and not for profit organisations and entrepreneurial activity in start-up and SME businesses.
As a Chartered Accountant and drawing on experience from his executive and Board roles, Ian brings to the Commission sound financial, commercial and strategy skills with a significant people and culture, health and safety, audit, risk management, digital innovation and governance background upon which to draw. With 15 years experience as an executive in the university sector, Ian has considerable experience in stakeholder engagement, having demonstrated success in bringing both internal and external groups of stakeholders together to achieve successful outcomes.
Phil Lamb
Appointed for a 3-year term from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2023
Phil has been involved in football for virtually his whole life, including 44 years of continuous, active involvement in the WAFL. As a player of 227 WAFL league games, a selector at club and state level and a commentator of WAFL and AFL matches, collectively spanning the past four and a half decades, he possesses a combination of experience across the various aspects of the game, an affinity with the clubs, club personnel, as well as many of the important stakeholders in WA football. Phil has been self-employed for over thirty years, as Joint Managing Director of Bay Financial Services, a finance broking company specialising exclusively in negotiating and arranging the financing of vehicles, plant and equipment for businesses in all fields of industry and commerce. He is also Founder and Managing Director of White Line Management, formed in 1995 to manage and support listed AFL and aspiring AFL Footballers as well as athletes from various disciplines. Business activities include negotiating player contracts, sourcing marketing and promotional opportunities and general support for clients.

Dixie Marshall
Appointed for a 3-year term from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2023
Dixie comes from a football family with intergenerational involvement in the game. She is a member of two WAFL Clubs, has family playing WAFL league/reserves and amateurs, and her great-grandfather and father played league for East Fremantle.
Sport has also played a large role in Dixie’s professional life. She was the first woman APL commentator on Australian television in 1986, reported football specifically and sports more broadly, for the 7 Network in Melbourne and the 9 Network in Perth, winning awards for football journalism and hosted the national sports programme, Sportsworld, with Bruce McAvaney. She has also worked at the highest level of State Government, from the Office of the Premier, and in this role helped develop a range of sporting policies, including the Kids Sport programme. Dixie now runs content agency, Flare, and is a director of the Marketforce Group - part of the global Omnicom network. Dixie brings contemporary media, data, digital marketing and communication expertise to the Commission, along with a sound understanding of Australian/WA Government structure and policy, crisis management skills, and extensive traditional media knowledge and relationships.

Michael Roberts appointed CEO of the WAFC 

Tuesday, December 1, 2020 - 9:32 AM

The WAFC is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr Michael Roberts as its Chief Executive Officer.  

Mr Roberts has most recently held the position as CEO of Tennis West since 2016.  He is a highly experienced sports administrator having held senior roles with Tennis Australia in WA and Tasmania, Cricket Tasmania and the Richmond Football Club.  

During his four-year tenure as CEO of Tennis West, Mr Roberts has demonstrated an outstanding record of achievement including four years of budget surpluses, implementation of a governance overhaul, record attendances at the Hopman Cup and delivery of a new staffing structure and training model to ensure improved servicing of clubs, schools and coaches.  

Under Mr Roberts’ oversight, the Hopman Cup was awarded WA’s best sporting event in 2018.  During a previous role as Executive Director of Tennis Tasmania, Mr Roberts was named as that state’s Sports Administrator of the Year.

WAFC Chairman Mr Wayne Martin said “We are delighted to have attracted a candidate of Michael’s quality. His direct experience and achievements, notably at Tennis West, will be highly beneficial to WA Football, particularly as we consider and implement the many initiatives we currently have underway and those to come out of the Public Account Committee inquiry."

“Michael will bring a fresh perspective and we expect he will transfer learnings and best practice from other sports over to WA football. His governance and financial management skills are highly relevant for the Commission."
“We felt it was important to appoint a CEO that wasn’t necessarily aligned to any particular element of WA Football and could bring an independent view. Michael has an excellent track record of sports stakeholder engagement including with government, sporting clubs, staff, participants and the fans.”

Mr Roberts said he was honoured to be offered the role and looked forward to commencing in the new year.

“Football is such an important part of WA’s social fabric and I’m genuinely excited at the prospect of playing a leadership role in the management of the game. It’s a responsibility that’s certainly not lost on me, particularly in the wake of COVID and the recent PAC inquiry."

“It is ideal to commence a role like this outside of the playing season as it will give me an excellent opportunity to engage with as many members of the footy family as possible prior to the 2021 season getting underway. I plan to hit the ground running” said Mr Roberts.

Mr Roberts will commence his new role with the WAFC on 11 January 2021. A summary of Mr Roberts’ biography is attached to this announcement.  

Notes for Media:
Mr Roberts will be available for media interviews after he has commenced his role with the WAFC.

Background information on Mr Michael Roberts
Michael Roberts is an experienced senior executive with an extensive track record in shaping and leading sports businesses. He has experience at the elite levels of tennis, cricket and AFL football across Australia.  He is tertiary qualified with an MBA and Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Sports Management and Marketing. 
Mr Roberts has demonstrated the ability to cultivate effective relationships with stakeholders at all levels including volunteers, employees, members, board members, coaches, players, and government officials. He has a comprehensive understanding of financial management, budgeting, reporting, contract management, statutory reporting and compliance processes.
Relevant Employment History
2016 – Current                              CEO – Tennis West, GM - ATP Cup (formerly Hopman Cup)
                                                    Tennis West
                                                    Tennis Australia
2011 – 2016                                  General Manager – Marketing and Commercial
                                                    General Manager – Hobart Hurricances
                                                    Cricket Tasmania
2003 – 2011                                  Executive Director (Tournament Director)
                                                    Tennis Tasmania
2001 – 2003                                  General Manager, Coburg Football Club
                                                    Richmond Football Club (AFL)
1999 – 2001                                  Football Technology Coordinator
                                                    Richmond Football Club (AFL)
2018                                             Sports Governance Course
                                                    Australian Institute of Company Directors
2014                                             Master of Business Administration
                                                    Deakin University
1998                                              Bachelor of Commerce (Sports Management & Marketing)
                                                     Deakin University

WAFL Boundary Umpire, Brad Hunt, announces retirement

Wednesday, November 25, 2020 - 12:49 PM

Brad Hunt has announced his retirement from the WAFL Umpiring squad. 

Hunt has umpired 255 WAFL League Games over his 13 years involved the game. Of those games, Hunt umpires six WAFL Grand Finals (2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2018 and 2019) and six state games (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2018 and 2019).

Read More ...

2020 NAB AFL Draft details confirmed

Thursday, November 19, 2020 - 11:32 AM

The AFL has today announced the 2020 NAB AFL Draft will take place on Wednesday December 9 in a virtual format broadcast live on FOX FOOTY & Kayo and via the Official LIVE AFL App at 7:00pm AEDT.
Due to current COVID-19 restrictions in place across the country, the 2020 NAB AFL Draft will be conducted virtually with the ARC, powered by RMIT University to serve as the central hub, with all 18 clubs to submit draft selections via an Online Draft System within the ARC.
Draft selections will join the broadcast virtually as AFL Chief Executive Gillon McLachlan announces the selections live from the ARC at Marvel Stadium. Read More ...

Webb joins WAFC as Head of Coaching

Wednesday, November 18, 2020 - 9:04 AM

The WA Football Commission is delighted to confirm the appointment of Marc Webb as its new Head of Coaching.
The former Fremantle Dockers assistant coach and Head of Development Academy will lead a new portfolio of coaching in WA, formulating coaching frameworks and accreditations at all levels of community football across WA.
The Head of Coaching will work closely with all community coaches to ensure that we continue to provide the best possible environments to increase player retention. Read More ...

WAFC Statement: Peel Thunder Investigation

Friday, November 13, 2020 - 2:31 PM

Peel Thunder Football Club has been found guilty by the West Australian Football Commission of a deliberate breach of the WAFL Total Player Payment section of the WAFL Rules and Regulations and WAFL License and Funding agreement, during the 2019 season. 

Following a comprehensive and independent investigation into the issue, the WAFC has found that multiple breaches had taken place by Peel Thunder Football Club and Club CEO John Ditchburn, which included; 

-    Deliberately providing false and misleading information in the lodgement of the Total Player Payments (TPP).
-    Providing an undeclared cash payment and other ancillary benefits to a Peel Thunder player.
-    Not advising the WAFC in writing of any potential breach of the WAFL Rules and Regulations.
-    Failing to comply with the WAFL Licence and Funding agreements.
-    Making a number of declaration and compliance related errors.

Read More ...

Quiet achiever Strom rewarded with Hughes Medal

Friday, November 13, 2020 - 6:30 AM - by Chris Pike

HE has made a career out of being invaluable but flying under the radar but it's hard to receive a greater acknowledge in your career than what Zac Strom has now achieved winning a South Fremantle fairest and best award in a premiership year.

It might have been a delayed start to the 2020 season thanks to the implications of the Coronavirus pandemic, but once things got up and running on Saturday July 18, South Fremantle quickly emerged as the team to beat in the competition.

The Bulldogs would go on to finish the nine-week home and away season on top of the ladder to claim the minor premiership and then despite a hiccup in the second semi-final, they would beat Claremont in a remarkable Grand Final at Fremantle Community Bank Oval.

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WAFC Statement: Public Accounts Committee Report

Thursday, November 12, 2020 - 3:08 PM

The WAFC has received the report from the Public Accounts Committee which was established to review the use of State funds and whether the WAFC is meeting its obligations under the State Funding Agreement.

The WAFC will now thoroughly review and consider the findings and recommendations included in the 110-page document.

The WAFC has fully participated throughout the inquiry process and will now give priority to the content of the report tabled today. Read More ...

Gault wins another Swan Medal on return to ruck

Thursday, November 12, 2020 - 10:50 AM - by Chris Pike

IT was no coincidence that Corey Gault went back to being a permanent ruckman in 2020 and he was back to outstanding form for Swan Districts culminating in him even claiming the Swan Medal ahead of the Sandover Medallist.

Gault initially made his return to Swan Districts after his time in the AFL system at Collingwood with a dominant season in the ruck back in 2017. 

He cemented himself as the best ruckman in the competition ending up being named to the WAFL Team of the Year and then claiming the Swan Medal as the fairest and best winner at Swan Districts.

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Brilliant Nelson claims fourth Breckler Medal

Friday, November 6, 2020 - 11:55 AM - by Chris Pike

SHANE Nelson took another step towards legendary status at the West Perth Football Club with the remarkably consistent and outstanding midfielder rewarded with a fourth Breckler Medal award for his outstanding 2020 season.

Nelson's impact and tremendously consistent and outstanding football for West Perth might be somewhat getting underestimated from the outside world now, but from inside the Falcons once again everything he produced in 2020 was fully appreciated.

Despite the shortened quarters during the eight-game season in 2020, Nelson was his usual outstanding self going on to average 25.4 possessions a game made up of three games with 30 or more disposals, and eight with 23 or more touches along the way.

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