Bec Goddard and players at the Hawthorn AFLW Official Team Photo Day at Waverley Park, August 05, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

HAWTHORN star Emily Bates has her coaching wishlist sorted as the Hawks begin their search for a new mentor.

The club's inaugural AFLW coach Bec Goddard announced her retirement last week, telling she had given the game everything she could after two seasons at the helm.

Goddard also led Adelaide to a premiership in the competition's first season.

Speaking on this week's edition of The W Show, Bates said the Hawks would ideally find someone with a fresh take on the evolution of the game. 

"[The club is] taking a lot of feedback from players, involving a lot of staff members in the program to find out exactly what we need and what the group wants," Bates said.

"As we're seeing in AFLW now there's so much more tactic to the game. I think early on teams that just had great fitness levels or great pressure, you could have lapses in quarters and still win but now were getting to the stage in AFLW where you need to put together four-quarter performances and you need to be able to adapt in-game.

"[We need] a coach that could certainly bring that tactical side, but also a coach that's great at relationships because I think that's the forefront of every great coach."


After winning three games in their inaugural season, the Hawks endured another three-win campaign in 2023 but showed some signs of improvement across the season.

But with fellow expansion teams Essendon and Sydney both making finals in their second season, Bates said the Hawks are aiming even higher.

"We've certainly set the foundations for ourselves, but you look at teams like Sydney and what they were able to do this year, and that's really what we're trying to springboard off," Bates said.

"You could see they had a really clear game plan, they're all on the same page, so a coach with a lot of background in more technical, tactical stuff is where we want to go next.

"It's a really exciting time for the club."

Emily Bates marks the ball during the match between St Kilda and Hawthorn at RSEA Park in round six, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

Bates joined the Hawks ahead of the 2023 season, with Goddard instrumental in luring her and fellow premiership Lion Greta Bodey to the club.

"She's such a big personality in football and has done so much for AFLW and she's such a big advocate for women and especially women in coaching, so we'll certainly miss her," Bates said.

"I loved my first season under Bec, but I wish her all the best."

Bec Goddard celebrates victory with Hawthorn's players after their victory over Sydney at Henson Park in round seven, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

Goddard's retirement means there's now four AFLW clubs are looking for a new coach heading into season 2024 - West Coast (Michael Prior)Collingwood (Steve Symonds) and the Western Bulldogs (Nathan Burke) have all opted to part ways within the last month.