Dakota Davidson celebrates a goal during the round five AFLW match between Hawthorn and Brisbane at Kinetic Stadium, October 01, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

DAKOTA Davidson returned from suspension with a bang on Sunday, taking big pack marks and booting long-range goals with ease.

While the Lion has always had one of the more powerful kicks for goal in the AFLW – along with Melbourne's Tayla Harris, and Richmond's Caitlin Greiser – a growing number of players have joined her in being able to kick truly from over 40m.

A dig into the numbers shows the average of goals kicked from within the 40-50m range has doubled this season, when compared to last.


A longer off-season affording more time in the gym to build strength – coupled with another pre-season to work on kicking technique – has helped give players the confidence to take long-distance shots.

In the 45 games played so far this year, players have kicked a total of 44 goals from the 40-50m range, an average of 0.98 a match.

Last season's 99 matches saw only 48 goals scored from the same range, the average which drops down to 0.48 long goals per game.


Goals by distance, average per match


2022 (S7, 99 matches)

2023 (45 matches)
















Stats provided by Champion Data

The increase in kicking distance – whether that's for goal or simply around the ground – has been just one element in the astonishing rise in scoring this year.

While game time has increased by around 11 per cent from last season, after at least two minutes was added to each quarter, scoring itself has increased at a much larger rate.

The average points scored per team in 2023, after five rounds, is 42.1.

Adelaide score broke the 100-point barrier against GWS in round four, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

After the same number of games last season, the average scored per team was 30.8.

This is a percentage increase of 36.7 per cent, more than triple the percentage increase of game time.

Last weekend, Greater Western Sydney became the first team this year to go through a game without scoring a goal.

By comparison, last year saw seven teams fail to kick a major over the 10 rounds, three of which were expansion sides in their first season.