AFLW players receive 94 per cent pay rise, new season to start in August

The AFL and AFL Players Association have agreed on a one-year collective bargaining agreement that will see the next AFLW season begin in August this year, while the players will also receive a significant boost in salary.

Key points:

  • The AFLW minimum salary has increased to $39,184 per season, up from $20,239
  • The two top-paid players per club will receive $71,935 per season, up from $37,155
  • Starting in the final week of August, the season remains at 10 rounds but will feature four weeks of finals

Across the board, average player salaries will increase by 94 per cent, with the minimum salary increasing to $39,184 per season up from $20,239 last year.

The best-paid players — of which there are two per club — will receive $71,935, up from $37,155.

Tier three and two players will receive $47,372 and $55,559 respectively, up from $24,468 and $28,697 last season.

Season seven will kick off on the last weekend of August, which is the week of the AFL men’s pre-finals bye.

The length of the season — which had been a point of contention for the players — will stay at 10 home and away rounds but add an additional week to the finals series.

The players had been pushing hard for an expansion of the competition beyond 10 rounds, but the AFL would not agree to extend the season length.

Instead, with all 18 clubs in the competition, the revamped finals series will now include the top eight sides, rather than the top six, and run over four weeks instead of three.

The length of the deal is much shorter than the previous collective bargaining agreement (CBA), which ran for three years, but enables the new season to start in August.

It will now expire at the same time as the AFL men’s CBA, but it is not yet known whether the players will negotiate their next CBA together.

Frustration had been growing from players, clubs and fans at the lack of certainty over the new season, including pre-season start dates, expansion and trade periods and the AFLW draft.

Clubs will now start pre-season training in just a few weeks, on June 13.


The expansion signing period, meanwhile, will commence on May 24, the sign and trade period on May 31 and the AFLW draft will be held on June 29.

Players had also been increasingly frustrated about the amount of unpaid overtime they were undertaking, having previously been contracted for just 15 hours per week and in-season only.

The new deal sees total player payments — including base salaries and prize money — jump to $25.6 million from $10.6 million in the previous season, an increase of 146 per cent.

Author: Ivan Robinson