Despite being just 26 years of age, Maddy Keryk finds herself as one of the most experienced players at Geelong.

The former Carlton vice-captain has played in every season of the AFLW since it began in 2017, and now entering her sixth year, Keryk is using her experience to lead by example.

“I guess I’m always trying to demonstrate the kind of behaviours we want from a training perspective as one of the more experienced players in our team,” said Keryk.

“I’ve played footy for almost my whole life.. so I’m trying to share that knowledge, especially with the other girls on our team who haven’t been playing football as long and are new to football, as best I can.”

Keryk’s relationships with her teammates have seen her selected in the player leadership group for the second year running.

“I think being part of the leadership group is something I don’t take lightly as I’ve been voted in by my teammates, so yeah I think it’s pretty special,” said Keryk.

“I think we (the leadership group) have a responsibility to really help drive the group forward and particularly improve upon last year’s performance. 

“We were pretty disappointed with how the season turned out, so we’ve put into place a lot of changes this year.

“So really pushing that along and helping the girls to get the most out of themselves with all the resources that have been made available to us.”

The team plays their first game against an opposition tomorrow when they take on Richmond in a practice match.

With nearly a full squad available, a fully fit Nina Morrison returning and a number of new recruits, Keryk is optimistic about her team’s chances.

“Everyone always thinks they’re flying at this time of pre-season, but you don’t really know until you come up against opposition, but I’m pretty optimistic. 

“If nothing else we’re certainly a lot fitter than we were last year, so we’ll be able to run out games a lot better. 

“I think that we’ve made a lot of progress from last year and I’m excited to see how that translates into matches.”

Practice match details
Richmond v Geelong Cats
Saturday 18 December at 2:00pm
Swinburne Centre
This event is closed to the general public.