Fremantle have received a significant boost ahead of Season 7 with star forward Ebony Antonio committing to sign for a further two seasons.
The announcement comes ahead of Saturday night’s Fairest and Best count, where Antonio is expected to once again feature strongly in an award she won in 2018 and placed second in 2020.
Antonio has long been Senior Coach Trent Cooper’s go to player to fill any need with her ability to play as a key forward, key defender or on the wing.
The 30-year-old had her biggest impact up forward in 2022, leading the team with 10 goals alongside Hayley Miller, highlighted by her Goal of the Year win from the round one RAC Derby.
She was also a finalist for Mark of the Year and had another goal nominated as a finalist in the Goal of the Year award.
While Antonio has earnt herself significant individual recognition from her six seasons, her main goal is to help Fremantle have the ultimate success in Season 7 after the team fell short in the Preliminary Final against eventual premier Adelaide.
“I’m really excited that I’ve got my contract settled. I’m a Freo girl at heart and I look forward to the next couple years and seeing us take the next step,” Antonio said.
“We’re not that far off when you look at it, we’ve got a really young list in terms of age. I’ll be a little bit older too, but when I look at how young we were as a group last year, it’s really exciting to know that they’ll all be better off for it next season.
“I’m really excited to see what these younger girls can produce with another season under their belts, I can see us going one game further.”
Antonio said it was her strong belief in the AFLW program that made her commit for a further two seasons.
“I wanted to be loyal to Fremantle, the girls and the coaches,” Antonio said.
“I really believe in what we’ve been building towards for the past couple of years and I have a strong belief in this group and the people around us.”
Fremantle Head of Football Operations and Performance Bob Murphy said Antonio was a crucial re-signing for the Club.
“We’re thrilled to have Ebony Antonio commit for a further two seasons, she’s an inaugural AFLW Fremantle Docker and, as well as being a significant part of our history, she will play a significant role in where we want to go,” Murphy said.
“Ebony’s such a valuable asset for the team as she’s shown the ability to play wherever we need her, while giving Trent Cooper the confidence that she will put in her full effort and excel in that role.
“It’s exciting to see our team for Season 7 coming together with both Ebony signing and having Adelaide’s Nikki Gore commit to sign with the Club.”