Swan Districts product Mikayla Hyde awarded the last spot on Fremantle’s AFLW list

Eliza ReillyThe West Australian
VideoMikayla Hyde is Freo's newest AFLW team member.

Swan Districts small forward Mikayla Hyde has been awarded the last spot on Fremantle’s AFLW list after impressing in the Dockers’ practice match against West Coast last weekend.

Hyde replaces injured defender Leah Mascall, who has been placed on the inactive list after rupturing her anterior cruciate ligament.

After missing out on selection at the 2020 AFLW draft, Fremantle senior coach Trent Cooper was impressed by how hard the 19-year-old worked to improve her game.

Hyde was one of five train-on players for Fremantle throughout the pre-season but forced her way onto the list after finishing as one of the Dockers’ best eight players against West Coast.

Hyde was invited to review her practice match with Cooper this week when he surprised her with an AFLW contract.

“To be honest, I wasn’t expecting it. I was so surprised. I didn’t know what to say when Trent offered me the contract out of the blue,” Hyde said.

While Hyde hasn’t had the opportunity to train with her new teammates for the majority of the pre-season, she hopes her footy smarts can help her adapt to the AFLW quickly.

Mikayla Hyde has represented Western Australia on multiple occasions.
Camera IconMikayla Hyde has represented Western Australia on multiple occasions. Credit: Chris Hyde/AFL Photos

“I watched a lot of footy growing up, so I think I have a bit of footy smarts and my IQ is probably one of my strongest traits. I’m pretty small so I like to cover the ground and I like to think I have a bit of speed,” Hyde said.

“I really enjoyed the scratch match. It was honestly good fun and the standard and the fitness was so high. You get the ball kicked to you spot on where you need it and the communication is at a next level standard.”

Cooper said Hyde’s scratch match performance demanded a spot on his final list of 30.

“Mikayla’s a very crafty small forward. As a 16-year-old, she finished second in the goal-kicking across all states against the 18-year-olds at the state championships when playing for WA. She did really well in that role,” Cooper said.

“She’s developed an engine now, she’s a really good runner and can play up on the wing as well. In the scratch match, she played a bit of wing and forward and she can fill both spots for us.

“It was great to see her step up to that level and be able to show that she’s improved in a couple of areas that she’s been working on over the past couple of seasons.”

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