Three years after relocating to Sydney to pursue her dream of playing in the AFL Women's league, Salamander Bay footballer Lisa Steane has achieved her goal.
The former Nelson Bay Marlins player, who captained the club's women's side to their first Black Diamond title in 2016, was selected as the Greater Western Sydney Giants' fourth pick in the October 22 national draft, and No. 23 overall.
AFLW head coach for GWS, Alan McConnell, said he was impressed with how Steane had embedded herself in the Sydney scene during the past two years.
He described Steane as a "dashing outside midfielder with a booming yet accurate kick".
"An outside midfielder or half-back with good speed and endurance, Steane is a local Sydney product who has worked really hard over the last two to three years to get herself the opportunity to be drafted onto our list," he said.
Steane moved to Sydney in 2016 to play in the AFL Sydney competition.
It followed a breakout season with Black Diamond AFL that year where, on top of winning the premiership with Nelson Bay, Steane was named the league's best and fairest player and was invited to test with the Giants.
The Salamander Bay 24-year-old grew up playing netball but thought she would try her hand at AFL in 2015 when a Black Diamond AFL women's competition was started.
She proved a natural and her efforts have not gone unnoticed.
Steane was named best on ground in Macquarie University's grand final victory against the East Coast Eagles in September.
Alongside Giants AFLW captain Amanda Farrugia, Steane led the Warriors to win the 2019 AFL Sydney Women's Premier Division.
Steane also joined the Giants VFLW program in 2019, playing alongside fellow Nelson Bay product Pippa Smyth who last played with the Giants in the AFLW in 2018.
Fellow Hunter AFL product Sarah Halvorsen was also picked by GWS in the 2019 AFLW draft.
The 24-year-old Newcastle City Blues forward and defender was selected by the GWS Giants as their second pick and No.61 overall in the national draft for the 2020 season.
McConnell said Halvorsen, also in the Giants VFLW program in 2019, has an accurate kick, is "blessed with good speed for her height" and is "a tough competitor".