AFLW expansion announcement to come on August 29

The AFL is expected to announce which teams will join the AFL Women’s competition in 2019 later this month on Tuesday, August 29, according to The Outer Sanctum.

On their latest podcast, Emma Race mentioned the date while sharing her experience as part of Hawthorn’s bid submission team.

Either two or four new teams will join the AFLW for the 2019 season. Image: Getty Images

“I just wanted to also give you the update, I went to AFL House last week to help Hawthorn pitch their AFLW licence,” Race said.

“It went well I suppose, I was nervous for the entirety of the time and the boardroom at AFL House is huge – absolutely massive.

“But we’ll find out which teams are going to get licenses on the 29th of August.”

It was originally anticipated that an announcement would be made in late July, but with some teams leaving it late to join the race for licences, more time was necessary for the AFL to weigh up all bid submissions.

The AFL received submissions from eight of the remaining ten clubs without AFLW teams before the June cutoff, and Race and The Outer Sanctum’s Hawthorn-supporting cast will be hoping the Hawks will join the competition in 2019.

It still remains unknown whether the AFL will opt to introduce two or four teams, but with so many clubs in the running, it appears that four is the more likely decision.

The only team expected to get a team without any doubt is Geelong.

The Cats, who also hold a provisional licence after being unsuccessful in 2016, have had a successful first season in the VFL Women’s competition, and have access to the wealth of junior talent coming through in the Greater Geelong region and western Victoria region.

Geelong’s home base of Simonds Stadium also offers elite training facilities that the VFLW team already has full access to.

Outside of Geelong, the expansion teams are harder to pick.

St Kilda, Richmond, North Melbourne and West Coast are the other teams that hold provisional licences, which gives them a loyalty advantage over the three clubs that joined the race this year.

Hawthorn, Essendon and Gold Coast launched their campaigns in recent months, and all make convincing cases.

In late June, we published an article attempting to predict which clubs would receive AFLW licences come announcement time.

But even in the short time since then, the projected expansion teams have changed as each club looks to put its best foot forward.

Come August 29, we will finally know which clubs will join the AFLW.

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