Affectionately known as ‘Dozer’ to her teammates, forward/ruck Sarah Wielstra will make her debut on the biggest stage in WA as Fremantle take on Melbourne at Optus Stadium on Saturday.

Taken as a mature age pick in the 2021 NAB AFLW Draft, Wielstra played as a full time ruck for Swan Districts in 2020 before heading forward in 2021.

She has continued her impressive development at training to break through to be Freo’s ninth debutant this season joining Aine Tighe, Ann McMahon, Dana East, Mikayla Morrison, Makaela Tuhakaraina, Amy Franklin, Airlie Runnalls and Jess Low.

Wielstra found out the news at Thursday night’s team meeting when Trent Cooper pulled a surprise via his PowerPoint presentation.

“It happened in the team meeting, they just announced which WAFLW players were coming back who played WAFLW the previous week,” Wielstra said.

“I was thinking who the inclusion would be and that’s when Trent said we had a debut and then up came a picture of me.

“I couldn’t hold back, the tears just started! I was crying because I didn’t think it was going to happen anytime soon.”

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Sarah Wielstra | Draft highlights

We've drafted Sarah Wielstra at Pick 57 in the 2021 NAB AFL Women's Draft!

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The 26-year-old said she hadn’t considered the possibility of making her AFLW debut at Optus Stadium.

“You dream about it and to play at Optus Stadium is going to be incredible,” Wielstra said.

“I’ve been to the boys’ games but you look more at Fremantle Oval thinking that’s where you’re going to play. Optus Stadium is one of the biggest stadiums in the country, it should be sick. I’m still in shock but I’m super stoked and I can’t wait to get out there.”

Senior coach Trent Cooper said Wielstra had worked hard for her opportunity.

“Sarah’s has trained well the whole pre-season and season,” Cooper said.

“It’s been really difficult for her not being able to press her claims by playing, but it’s been fantastic to have Sarah being able to play in the WAFLW competition over the past couple of weeks.

“She has been super competitive in the ruck and won a heap of hitouts both weeks, but she can also play forward and do some damage there.

“Sarah comes into this game with confidence having played well over the past two weeks, and we look forward to her being able to assist Mim Strom in the ruck and give us a really good presence up forward as well.”

Tickets are on sale now for Saturday’s double header at Optus Stadium, with Fremantle playing Melbourne at 4pm and a West Coast v Western Bulldogs game following at 6.40pm. Click the buttons below to purchase or redeem your tickets.