THE AFL'S demand for AFLW coaches to adjust their tactics in the hope of producing higher-scoring games has received widespread criticism.
AFL football boss Steve Hocking has written to clubs asking them to make immediate changes after a low-scoring start to the NAB AFL Women's competition.
A memo to coaches on Wednesday published by Fox Sports News identified congestion around stoppages and defensive flooding as two key issues they should address.
Teams will be required to set up for centre bounces with five defenders, six midfielders and five forwards, preventing them putting extra bodies around the ball as commonly happens in the men's competition.
A protected area will be introduced for other stoppages while forwards will be asked to hold their place rather than being drawn into the congestion.
Brisbane forward Jessica Wuetschner on Wednesday took to social media to label the modifications "ridiculous".
"This is my view only but are they bloody serious?" Wuetschner posted on Twitter.
"We are out here to win, whatever it takes.
"If you ask me, I saw some pretty exciting stuff on the weekend and I think this is ridiculous. How many rule changes do you want? Is it even AFL anymore?"
Former Melbourne captain Garry Lyon said coaches should be focused solely on winning, rather than the look of the game.
"If you want an attractive and high-scoring game, legislate and take it out of the hands of the coaches..." he told SEN.
"Don't, after one round, go to the coaches and say hang on a minute, make it attractive.
"That isn't their obligation."
But AFL head of women's football Nicole Livingstone told SEN radio on Wednesday evening that the memo was the product of "collaborative, unified discussion" with the coaches of all eight AFLW clubs.
"They're in agreeance that it would be great to actually give the girls a chance to showcase their skills, to move the ball a little bit more and to stop the repeated stoppages and the kick-to-kick that is essentially happening down the skinny side, which is what we saw in the opening game between Carlton and Collingwood," she said.
Asked if the commercial considerations involving AFLW broadcasters and sponsors were driving the changes, Livingstone said: "I would probably say sustainability ... the whole sustainability of the league is really important to the AFL...
"Everybody is talking about the fact that the girls eventually one day would like the choice to be full-time footballers, so we are thinking about that big picture as well," she said.
"So it's presenting the game in the best possible way and the best chance for us to showcase women's football."
AFL chief Gillon McLachlan on Tuesday said he was comfortable with the standard of play but wanted to see coaches take a more attacking mindset.
Friday night's primetime season-opener between Carlton and Collingwood at a near-capacity Princes Park proved particularly miserly.
No goals were scored in the entire second half as the Blues, who kept numbers back throughout the match, prevailed 3.4 (22) to 2.2 (14).
Melbourne and Greater Western Sydney shared in the highest-scoring and most entertaining match of the round with the Demons claiming a 7.3 (45) to 6.3 (39) victory.
Carlton skipper Brianna Davey insisted the Blues weren't instructed to flood their defensive 50, instead suggesting nerves influenced the scoreline.
But while players were conscious of the need for entertainment, Davey said winning games had to remain the priority.
"As players and as teams, we probably don't really care what it looks like as long as we're getting that win," she said.
"We understand from a spectacle point of view, we want people to enjoy watching the game.
"We'll continue to do that but at the same time ... we're here to win games."