The AFL has ruled against a 190cm tall, 100kg transgender player who wanted to nominate in the AFL women’s draft because she’d have been too strong for her opponents.
Hannah Mouncey, who began her transition in 2015 and played AFL in Canberra this season, was ruled ineligible for the draft by a subcommittee the based its decision on an “analysis of transgender strength, stamina and physique, as well as the AFLW being in its infancy,” according to AFL.com.au.
The five-person sub-committee, which included three AFL commissioners, and game’s general manager of inclusion, Tanya Hosch, told Mouncey on Monday her application had been turned down, saying it had consulted with a range of organisations, including the Players’ Association and Australian Sports Commission.
With the AFL women’s competition preparing for its second season and the draft due to begin tomorrow, Hosch told AFL.com.au that each case involving a transgender footballer would be assessed individually and “decided on its own merits along with the individual circumstances of each future nominee”.
“[Mouncey] has contributed to a process which will substantially inform the development of the AFL’s transgender policy and procedure for future players at the elite level,” she said.
The decision only involves next year’s competition and upcoming draft, giving Mouncey the opportunity to nominate again, the AFL said.
A number of women’s teams had expressed an interest in recruiting the ruckwoman, who kicked 17 goals in eight games this season, and previously represented Australia in men’s handball.
Mouncey is believed to have met the International Olympic Committee’s rules on testosterone levels.
She did not comment on the decision beyond offering her best wishes to everyone who made it into the draft.
Good luck to all the girls who nominated for the AFLW draft tomorrow, especially my mates from Canberra. I can’t wait to see you all at the highest level and to play with and against you back in Canberra next year!
— Hannah Mouncey ?♀️ (@hannahmouncey1) October 17, 2017
But not all sports fans were impressed with the decision.
— Emmsy✌? (@emmsyish) October 17, 2017
As someone who is pretty attuned with trans guidelines +policies in sport the AFLW will have hard time justifying+global media will pick up
— Ryan Storr (@whitbywonder) October 17, 2017
Absolutely heart broken for Hannah Mouncey ? there is no good reason she shouldn't be able to play AFLW. Size disparities are common in AFL!
— Another 37 years?? (@PollyMaeve) October 17, 2017
Hannah Mouncey deserved to play. Shame on the AFL for excluding her from our great game! #AFLW
— ??Joey Nicita ?? (@JoeyNicita) October 17, 2017
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