After enduring two years on the sidelines due to injury, all Kiara Bowers wanted in her 2019 debut AFLW season was to play footy and to play it well.

She ticked that box, playing every game on the way to winning Freo’s fairest and best award, and at Saturday’s smoking ceremony at Fremantle Oval, Bowers revealed her motivation heading into the 2020 season.

Bowers and her partner Adele are expecting a baby boy mid-year, and she gave a moving speech to her teammates at the dawn ceremony, held eight days out of Freo’s round one clash against Geelong this Sunday. 

“Last year I went into the season trying to prove to myself that I can play, and prove to the girls and the club that I can play and give back to you guys,” Bowers said.

“This year I have a different mindset. We’re having a kid, he’s a little boy and ‘Webby’ (assistant coach Lisa Webb) just had a little boy, ‘Cotters’ (assistant coach Amy Lavel) is having a little boy.

“My mindset is a bit different this year. I wanted to tell you guys that we are paving the way for young men to look up to strong women and I think that’s incredible.

“I just want us to know that’s what we’re showing them.”