Webb ready for Dockers challenge
New Fremantle AFLW senior coach Lisa Webb says the women’s game has developed out of sight since her playing days.
The former Docker, who played six games for the club in 2018 before moving into coaching, was appointed to replace Trent Cooper last year after a disappointing season where the club finished in 12th.
Webb told Sports Breakfast the skills of players had greatly improved since the establishment of the competition.
“There’s no way five years ago I would’ve got a game with the type of players that are coming through right now, they’re really hard,” Webb said.
“They’re used to the big tackles, they’re playing contested footy from a young age.
“There’s some great coaches in the younger ranks and a really strong pathway now for female football … when they come into the team, they’ve really been able to grasp what we’re trying to achieve.”
Webb has joined the Dockers after a stint with the Western Bulldogs as midfield coach, with her husband Marc filling the same role for their men’s side.
Having moved her young family back across the country to take up the position, Webb said a strong support system was helping her thrive.
“I’m so fortunate to have the support I have,” she said.
“As the girls say, I’m an all-in type of person. When I’m down at the club, half the time I’ve got my kids or my mum there helping me as well, so it’s a real team effort.
“I always say to the players ‘If you really want something, you can make it work’. Of course, it’s a juggle.
“It takes the edge off for the players as well, just seeing kids around. They’re a great influence on the group and have a calming effect most of the time.”
The Dockers open their campaign against West Coast this weekend in the sixth edition of the Western Derby in the AFLW, with Webb saying she was confident her side was well prepared on the back of a strong preseason.
“It is a big game, the derbies are always big, but we’re just making sure we’re really getting back to how we want to play and not getting distracted by opposition,” she said.
“Our preparation is key and we focus on the things we can control in the lead-up.
“We’re really excited at the opportunity, but we just want to put our best foot forward this week and really have crack.”
The clash between the Dockers and the Eagles gets underway at 3:05pm on Sunday at Fremantle Community Bank Oval.
IMAGE: The West Australian.