The GIANTS’ AFLW side has finalised its list for the 2024 AFLW season, signing athletic Irish rookie Eilish O’Dowd.

Hailing from the small town of Ballinamore, Ireland, O’Dowd joins the GIANTS after playing an instrumental role in Dublin wining the All-Ireland Gaelic Championship last year.

Having represented her county in Gaelic football at the highest level since juniors, the 25-year-old becomes the fourth Irish player signed by the GIANTS’ AFLW side since 2016.

Standing at 180cm tall, O’Dowd boasts a range of physical attributes the GIANTS believe will translate well into the AFLW system.

Taking little time to make a strong first impression, O’Dowd equalled the club’s all-time AFLW record for the 1.6km time trial on Monday at the VAILO Community Centre.

GIANTS Executive General Manager - Football Strategy and Operations, Briana Harvey, said the club is thrilled to welcome O’Dowd to the GIANTS. 

“Eilish has been a star of Gaelic football back home for some time and after keeping a close eye on her last season we are rapt to have her become a GIANT for season 2024,” Harvey said.

“She has some very strong physical attributes that we think we can translate really well to AFLW and we’re excited by her versatility and her ability to play a variety of roles.

“Eilish’s aerobic capacity is at an elite level and seeing her tie the record for the ‘GIANT Mile’ yesterday was awesome to see and we’re excited about what she can bring to the group.

“Our list for the 2024 season is now complete and we can’t wait to utilise the upcoming VFLW season to get a head start on our preparations and be raring to go come the start of the AFLW season later in the year.”

This year the GIANTS will take part in the VFLW competition for the first time since 2019, playing five games for premiership points across the season.

Consisting of the majority of the club’s AFLW side, the GIANTS will kickstart their VFLW campaign against Carlton on Saturday, April 6 at Ikon Park.