MELBOURNE will be without Irish recruits Niamh McEvoy and Sinead Goldrick for the AFL Women’s Finals Series, after the decision was made for the pair to return home.
The Demons made the call amidst the evolving COVID-19 crisis, with concerns over whether the two would be able to travel back to Ireland following the conclusion of the season.
“With so much uncertainty in the world at the moment, we think what’s best for Niamh and Sinead is to be back home in Ireland with their families,” AFLW Football Manager Daniel McPherson told Melbourne Media.
“Whilst we would obviously love for both of them to be lining up for us against GWS in our first ever AFLW final this Saturday, we took the view that getting them home safely was far more important at this point in time.”
The Dublin duo, who arrived in Melbourne with no AFL experience, have been impressive contributors in 2020.
With their rich sporting backgrounds, including plenty of success in the Dublin Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA), both brought a competitive edge to the Demon outfit.
And while unforeseen circumstances mean their time in Melbourne will end prematurely, the red and blue are hopeful they will return in 2021.
“Niamh and Sinead have been outstanding additions to our group this year,” McPherson said.
“Within a few short months, they have been able to learn a whole new game and have both become significant contributors in our performances this season.
“They are both terrific competitors who have worked incredibly hard on their AFL craft. We will miss having them with us as we head into our first AFL Women’s Finals Series.
“We know the girls are disappointed that it has ended like this for now, but we look forward to hopefully seeing them back next season.”