Fallen skipper has faith
Crows still confident for Lions’ toughest assignment
ADELAIDE captain Chelsea Randall is gutted to not be playing in Saturday’s AFLW grand final, but says the team does not need her to win and she will be cheering proudly on the sidelines.
Randall will miss the decider against Brisbane at Adelaide Oval after being ruled out due to the league’s 12-day concussion protocols.
The three-time All-Australian collided heavily with Melbourne’s Eliza McNamara in the first quarter of the preliminary final at Adelaide Oval on Saturday and did not return to the field. Randall told Adelaide’s website this week that it was all about the club chasing its third women’s premiership, not her absence. “As much as I am gutted, devastated, sad that I won’t be taking the field with my teammates in the grand final this weekend, the last six months, the last 10 games, it hasn’t been about me, it hasn’t been about one sole individual,” two-time Crows premiership skipper said.
“It’s been about this group and just how special they are and the journey we’ve all been on together.
“They don’t need me – they have proven that to themselves on the weekend that they can get the job done without me.
“I’ll be standing immensely proud on the sidelines alongside our fans and our supporters cheering on our girls to get across the line.
“It’s a bloody exciting time for our football club.”
Randall missed the entire 2020 campaign after tearing her anterior cruciate ligament during pre-season.
She remembered taking the football and hoping to absorb contact before continuing forward last Saturday.
“But unfortunately we both collided in a nasty way,” she said. “I just remember being on the floor with my mouth pretty bloody because I’d hit my jaw.”
Randall said she reinforced to her teammates that they were ready for the challenge.
“Not that I have kids, but I can imagine what it would be like watching your young son or daughter drive away as they’re an 18-year-old, going off into the world and you’ve done everything you’ve possibly can to help them and support them,” she said.