Slice of Cheese

2018 Super League Team of the Year


Another stellar season for the experienced keeper who remains the premiere shot-stopper in the league. Her reach and agility make her such a tough proposition for opposing shooters and she keeps out shots that no other keeper does. In games without Vanderniet this year, Clarence conceded some 5.6 goals against per game. With her in the side, that number drops to just 2.1! Now certainly there are other factors such as O’Brien and Harrison’s arrival that impacted on that figure, but it does show just how much she can mean to her side.


Her side may have lacked the success of 2017, but on an individual level, Kayla Mason continued to improve. One of the toughest, most uncompromising defenders in the league, Mason became a real leader at the back for her side. She set the tone with her willingness to put her body on the line and high work rate. Her recovery speed and tough tackling made her a highly effective defender.


Anchored the defence of yet another title-winning, undefeated side, and it’s now over 2 years since she tasted a league defeat. That is no coincidence, her defensive work saw her resemble an immovable object in the heart of the Ulverstone defence. Nellis is an old school stopper who shuts down anything that comes her way and her diligence allowed the likes of Georgia Foote the licence to bomb on into attack. A vital piece of the Ulverstone system and the best pure defensive defender in the competition.


Dunbabin compiled a classy year in the middle of the Pirates defence and quickly stamped herself as one of the leaders of the side. A cerebral, intelligent player, Dunbabin brought the sense of calm to the defensive unit and her composure on the ball and sound decision making made her pivotal to her sides ability to play the ball out of defence and build from the back.


The Optus Medal winner is a walk up start for the team of the year, but her position was less definitive. Predominantly a centre back, Foote spent just as much time in the opposition half as her own, stepping up, marauding forwards and taking over ball games. As such we have slotted her just in front of the back three. She scored 13 times, set up plenty of others and was one of her sides chief playmakers, impacting the game profoundly wherever she was situated on the pitch.


It’s no coincidence that City’s downturn in form coincided with Bygrave’s absence, as for the first half of the year, she was the dominant player of the competition. She scored 9 times from central midfield and routinely picked out the top corner of the goals with her trademark hits from long range. Polled 17 votes for a fourth-place finish in the medal despite only playing 15 times and her impact in those games was significant.


A very well rounded midfield, Horgan brings a valuable skillset to her side that makes her an extremely versatile player. She was the key playmaker in midfield this year for the Pirates but offered plenty when out of possession as she was always a willing worker to win the ball back. A good range of passing and some crisp set-piece delivery make her one of the best midfielders going around.


Voted the Players MVP and second only to her sister in the Optus Medal, Lucy Foote was a tour de force in the Ulverstone midfield this year, utterly dominating the competition upon her return. Her blend of skill and strength meant she was just as likely to skip past a defender as she was to put a strong challenge in and win the ball back. Foote was probably more noted for her ability to set others up, yet she still scored 13 times herself, quite simply she did it all for her side.


Having announced herself as a player of the future in 2017, Davis arrived as a fully fledged star of the competition this year. Her 18 goals were good enough for third place in the scoring charts, but she would have had more if not for a late season injury that saw the goals dry up in August. Earlier in the year, she carried the Lions attack and routinely got the better of defenders. Davis is one of the most exciting players in the league with her superb dribbling skills, making her such a threat to break a game open.


The Ulverstone winger was a consistent goalscorer for her side and an important source of secondary scoring. She chimed in with 11 goals for the season and had a handy knack of conjuring them in important games. Her delivery into the area consistently asked questions of opposing defences and she set up numerous goal-scoring chances for her side with her crossing from wide areas.


The primary job of most strikers is to hit the back of the net and that is just what Jazmin Gorrie did, and repeatedly. A 38 goal haul from a 21 game season is a staggering return and it equals what had seemed an unbreakable mark set by Lucy Johnson a year earlier. Gorrie’s sheer pace made her highly impactful playing off the shoulder of the last defender, as more often than not, there was no catching her once she broke.



The only player to have played in 22 league games this season, following her midseason switch to Clarence. Before she arrived, Clarence was winless from 8 games, but from that point on they then went 4-3-5 and secured their place in the league for 2019. O’Brien was not the sole reason for that uptick in results, but she was a significant part of it. Her midfield performances gave Clarence a foothold in games they had previously lacked, as she drove possession and broke up the play.


Burt was a reliable presence in the Zebras midfield and was once again one of the best players in the Super League. A quality passer of the ball, Burt is such a tidy, efficient player and her team, therefore, looked to get the ball to her whenever possible. She would have completed more passes than just about anybody in the league this season and claimed top 10 finishes in both the Player’s MVP and Optus Medal.


Tadros was a welcome return to the University midfield brigade this season and she picked up where she left off in 2016, as an extremely effective midfield destroyer. Sitting in front of the back four, Tadros excelled at winning the ball back for her side and shutting down opposition attacks. Her reading of the game and tenacity made her a vital cog in the side and her decision making with her passing also stood out.


Making her step up to the top tier of Women’s Football, the talented young South Hobart attacker quickly caught the eye as one of the most exciting young prospects in the league. She scored six goals and a was a major contributor in attack, filling the role as her sides most consistent, creative force. Her ability to get in behind the defensive lines and feed the likes of Djakic made her one of the liveliest weapons in the league.


The beneficiary of those supply lines, Djakic ended the season with 19 goals from 19 games, a fine return for any striker. Djakic gave the side a focal point and outside of her replacement at Ulverstone in Jazmin Gorrie, she was the most prolific goalscorer in the league. Her timing off runs and ice cold finishing ability made her a major part of South’s impressive climb up the table.


Foote began the year as the senior coach before Gorrie took over and was handed the reins mid-season. So it was Foote who laid the foundation for the success before Gorrie came in and drove them to the finish line. The respect his players have, when they talk about the job he did this year speaks volumes about the work done by Gorrie in the dugout. A perfect season is an incredible feat and its not possible without wonderful leadership at the top.