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Roos and Tasmania combine for AFLW bid

Lacie Harvey presents North's AFLW bid with Jack Ziebell and Brad Scott. Picture: @NMFCOfficial Twitter

NORTH Melbourne and Tasmania unveiled plans to replicate Adelaide's premiership-winning AFL Women's union with the Northern Territory in their joint submission for a 2019 licence.

The budding partnership is a long time in the works, but Kangaroos chief executive Carl Dilena is so intent on making it a success that his goal is to have half of the playing list from Tasmania.

North Melbourne coach Brad Scott, captain Jack Ziebell and Lacie Harvey – daughter of games record-holder Brent – delivered the club's submission on Friday to AFL football operations manager Simon Lethlean and head of female football Josh Vanderloo.

The Roos hope to be one of at least two new clubs – and up to four – awarded a spot in the third season of the fledgling competition, which began with much fanfare in February this year.

"Tasmania has understandably been crying out for greater representation on the national stage and our AFLW proposal seeks to deliver this through a genuine joint venture approach," Dilena said.

"A critical success factor for our proposal is the development of female football talent in Tasmania and sustained growth of the national AFLW talent pool. We are already a long way down the path to achieving this.

"Over the past two years, we have worked closely with AFL Tasmania to improve Tasmanian football talent pathways, particularly for females."

The AFL awarded the Roos a provisional AFLW licence, along with St Kilda, Geelong, Richmond and West Coast, after unsuccessful bids to be part of the inaugural season.

That status will give those clubs an advantage in their second attempt over rival bids from Hawthorn, Essendon and Gold Coast.

AFL Tasmania's AFLW spokesperson Trisha Squires told AFL.com.au the organisation held discussions with both North Melbourne and Hawthorn, but worked closer with the Roos because of their provisional licence. Both clubs have existing long-term deals to play AFL matches in the state.

Squires said the aim was for the hybrid club to play matches in both Hobart and Launceston – as well as Melbourne – have a training base in Tasmania and for there to be a Tasmanian presence on the jumper.

"It would be a very positive outcome for Tasmania to have a team and I think it would be something Tasmanians would openly embrace," Squires said.

"We do know it's been a long discussion in regard to having an AFL club and I think if there's a meaningful partnership, I think Tasmanians will definitely get on board that."

Tasmanian Premier Will Hodgman has endorsed the North Melbourne-Tasmania AFLW bid, despite public comments he wanted the state to have a team of its own rather than a hybrid version.

Dilena highlighted the Kangaroos' commitment to Tasmania with their community programs based around increasing participation, enhancing education outcomes and promoting social inclusion.

"Our work with AFL Tasmania has seen the number of girls and women’s teams in Tasmania grow from seven to 62 within the past two years, while there are now 43 youth or girls' teams in the state," Dilena said.

"There were no youth or girls' teams just two years ago. Importantly, the Tasmanian Women’s State League has now been introduced, further enhancing the female talent pathways in Tasmania.

"Our target is to have half of our team from Tasmania, with the team being a genuine North Melbourne-Tasmania partnership. There were only four Tasmanians in the AFLW in 2017 and we are determined to significantly increase this number."

The AFLW Crows have training bases in Adelaide and Darwin and played matches in both cities, with nine NT footballers in the inaugural side.