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Missed call leads to second chance

Latest AFLW signings Meghan McDonald and Julia Crockett-Grills - Geelong Cats
Latest AFLW signings Meghan McDonald and Julia Crockett-Grills

Newly-signed Geelong Cat Meghan McDonald says she stayed determined and hopeful in returning to the AFLW.

The 2016 and 2017 Darebin Falcons’ premiership member narrowly missed out last year, making McDonald more eager than ever to return to the big league.

“I knew with expansion that the opportunity would be there as long as I was committed enough.”

“It gave me an opportunity to work on a lot of things over summer,” McDonald said.

The key back will become one of the team’s more experienced players, helping in leadership throughout the squad despite managing just one season for the Dogs in 2017 before being delisted.

Speaking to the Geelong Advertiser, McDonald said, “I really felt my first year I had a sense of impostor syndrome. I had only played (football) for a year and it was great to get the opportunity then, but I probably wasn’t ready to perform the way I would have liked to.”

“I hope to be able to use this second opportunity at AFL to really try and take it with both hands and show some more leadership. I think I’ve more experienced myself now.”

It was a missed call from VFL operations manager Ben Waller who gave her the news, which reignited McDonald’s AFLW dream.

“I got a missed call from a number and I thought I’d call back.”

“A guy answered the phone and said, ‘Hi Meg’, and I said, ‘Who is this?’ and he said, ‘it’s Ben from Geelong’.

“That came early August and I had some teammates that were here already and who were very positive about the club, and then I think I came down the next week and they were kind enough to show me around.”

Signing alongside other Darebin Falcons teammates, McDonald drew to the nature of the club in which they are all thrilled to be a part of.

“We all relate to the sense of community down here, and the kind of club that it is.”

McDonald capped off an outstanding season by being named in the VFLW Team of the Year at Crown Palladium on Monday night. She was one of four future Geelong AFLW players that made the team.

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The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs