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AFLW: Freo sticks with trusted skipper

AFLW 2017 Training - Fremantle 181217
Kara Donnellan will against captain the Dockers in 2018

KARA Donnellan led Fremantle from the front in its first season in the NAB AFL Women's competition, and will do so again in 2018.

The tough 25-year-old midfielder was one of the Dockers' best in a difficult, injury-decimated year for the team, which finished second-last with one win and a draw. 

Donnellan has captained WAWFL club Swan Districts to consecutive premierships in 2016 and 2017.

She is expecting to see significant improvement from the Dockers in 2018

"There were a lot of unknowns in the first year for the players, clubs and even the AFLW," Donnellan told fremantlefc.com.au.

"We're just really driven and motivated for success in 2018 and that excitement within the group is contagious."

Donnellan will be supported by two vice-captains, Kiara Bowers and Amy Lavell. 

Bowers was selected by Fremantle as a marquee player, but the midfielder has yet to play for the club after tearing her ACL and undergoing a knee reconstruction in late 2016. 

She is expected to be available for selection for the Dockers' first match, which is Sunday, 4 February against the Western Bulldogs at Whitten Oval.

Lavell, 30, was in the leadership group last year but has been promoted to vice-captain. 

The injured Kirby Bentley, who will miss the 2018 AFLW season with a torn meniscus in her knee, will not continue in her vice-captaincy role.