TAYLA Harris is officially a Demon.
Melbourne secured the key forward in a three-way deal with GWS and Carlton on Tuesday morning, which will see Harris pull on the red and blue for the 2021/22 AFL Women’s season.
In exchange for the star, the Dees part ways with pick No.32 and No.37, while obtaining the 42nd and 44th selections.
No stranger to the competition, Harris arrives with 37 games and 29 goals to her name, having made a big impact across her five seasons at the top level.
Melbourne AFLW list manager Todd Patterson said the move was an exciting one for Harris and Dees fans alike.
“We are excited to welcome Tayla to the club,” Patterson told Melbourne Media.
“In speaking with Tayla, we feel like Melbourne can provide an environment for her to be at her very best.
“Likewise, we think Tayla is a good fit for the structure of our team and will play a key role in bolstering our forward line.
“With the spread of talent on our list, we believe Tayla will benefit greatly from the Melbourne system and culture and be able to perform at her peak.”
Harris first made waves during the AFL Women’s Exhibition Series – where she represented Melbourne – and earned herself a marquee signing at Brisbane for the inaugural season of the competition.
She went on to receive All-Australian honours before continuing her career at the Blues, where she got the nod a further two times (2019 and 2020) and was Carlton’s leading goalkicker on two occasions.
While season 2021 presented its challenges for Harris, the Demons are positive the key forward, who is also a professional boxer, can regain her confidence and become an integral part of the team.
“Our meetings with Tayla have been fantastic,” Patterson said.
“She has met with a varied cross-section of the club and feels really supported entering our environment.
“Her resume as a player is very impressive. She sits in the top 10 goalkickers in the competition’s history, is a three-time All-Australian and has twice played in a Grand Final.
“In speaking with her and from her actions already, Tayla is prepared to put in the work and is determined to let her football do the talking.”
And with a refined focus and hunger, Harris can’t wait to build on her form and be a strong contributor in the red and blue.
“I am really excited to be part of such a great club with a talented group of girls, all pushing to be their best,” Harris said.
“I want to be a positive voice around the club and for my teammates. I know it’s up to me to perform my role and play my part in this team and I’m ready for that challenge.”
Harris joins former Cat Olivia Purcell in being recruited to the Dees on Tuesday, ahead of the closing of the AFLW Sign and Trade Period on Wednesday.