AFLW Fantasy – Strategy & Tactics

Written by The Salamander on February 7 2020

With the rules for the AFLW fantasy being a bit different to what you may be used to, it’s worth having a think about how this will impact us from a strategic and tactical standpoint.

Starting teams: why guns and rookies may not be the best strategy.

In last year’s competition, adjusting for squad size, the rookies cost between 1.16 and 2.33 percent of the total salary cap. This year, they range from 2.5 to 5.83 percent. That’s expensive. Also, as prices don’t change week to week in this competition, selecting rookies won’t make it any easier to upgrade later. Some may offer good value in terms of points-per-dollars-spent, but that’s all they offer.

What to do instead?

Look for value. In my next post, which will be more stats-based, I’ll point you in the direction to do that.


Having a good captain will be vital. As there is no rolling lockout, you won’t be able to loophole, but there are still some tactical considerations to be made. You could pick a consistently high performer, or you could decide to captain somebody with favourable matchup (e.g. a key forward against a defensively weak team).

Trading strategy.

As a reminder, you get two free trades per week. These do not roll over – it’s a use-them-or-lose-them deal. You can also buy additional trades at the cost of points.

The lack of price changes gives you the opportunity to assess players before bringing them in, without having to pay extra for them. It might, then, be advantageous to leave some cap space free, to make it easier to shuffle your team around after round 1. On the other hand, the extra flexibility may or may not make up for the points you are likely to lose by spending less money.

Given the limit of 5 players from any one club, it may be worth limiting yourself to 4, so that you can more easily bring in a player from that club if they break out.

It’s also quite viable under this system to trade players in and out based on their week-to-week match-ups, assuming you don’t have any injuries or similar to tend to.

Anyway, I hope that’s given you something to think about. I certainly don’t have all the answers, so if you have any suggestions, let us know in the comments below.

P.S. Don’t forget that the Round 1 lockout is at 6:40 PM AEDT tonight.


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5 thoughts on “AFLW Fantasy – Strategy & Tactics”

  1. Starting to wonder how much to invest in my ruck, as scoring has changed with hitouts. Do I go all out on Foley treating her like Grundy, or save some money in this division to then spend elsewhere? North currently have all 3 rucks playing, with the cheapest named as the ruck with the 2 50K rucks as forwards, so steering clear from them atm.
    Gold Coast only have 2 rucks and they are at 15k and 20k so it is tempting going there, but one is starting on the bench so how they will be used will cause questions.

    Tough choice with just 1 position, the other positions are another can of worms. Boy oh boy this will be interesting


    1. For what it’s worth, the past scores were re-calculated with the new formula before we priced the players.

      Foley might end up sharing the ruck at some stage, but she looks like she’ll be rucking solo for the time being. I’d avoid Emma King, because she’s slated to spend a lot more time forward this season. Lauren Pearce will be out for the first few weeks, but could certainly be worth a look when she gets back.

      In general, if you can find a rookie-priced player who will be more or less rucking solo, pick them. I did this with Jess Foley and Parris Laurie last year, and it worked a treat.


  2. I’m still smarting from my first go at the ridiculous BBL….think I’ll stick to AFL…so much to digest even already from the legends on here.


    1. I am a huge supporter / follower of elite womens sport wighty , aflw still has a way to go. Very good athletes but not good footballers. Before anyone jumps on me it is actually football being played not another sport we are adapting . Will be good after a few more pre seasons i think.


      1. Having said that, daisy pearce is a rolled gold champ and my favourite special comments person in afl , bar none.



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