TG4 Ladies Senior All-Ireland Football Championship Semi-Final, Croke Park, Co. Dublin.
Mayo vs Galway
Mayo’s Rachel Kearns with Nicola Ward of Galway
Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy
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Mayo Ladies' footballer Rachel Kearns has signed with AFLW side Geelong Cats as a rookie.
After an impressive showing during a visit to the club last year, Kearns has now been signed ahead of the AFLW Rookie Deadline and she will now become the Cats' first ever Irish player in the AFLW.
The 24-year-old MacHale Rovers clubwoman was an LGFA All-Star full forward in 2019, a member of the Republic of Ireland under-19 soccer squad and has been awarded two All-Ireland medals in boxing.
While her All-Star was won for her performances up front, she has also deputised very well in defence for Mayo and her adaptability is sure to prove a strong asset in the AFLW.
A versatile sportswoman, she returned to top level soccer with Galway WFC this year having previously played for Castlebar Celtic in the Women's National League. Her impact for Galway was immediate and she scooped the player of the month award in April of this year.
Geelong's Head of AFLW Brett Johnson spoke highly of the Irish star:
“Rachel is an experienced athlete, her list of achievements speak for themselves.
“She is well suited to the physicality of AFLW and we see her making a strong contribution.”
Kearns is the latest in a sizeable list of current or former Mayo Ladies players who have made the trip to Australia, including Cora Staunton (GWS), Aileen Gilroy (North Melbourne), Sarah Rowe (Collingwood) and sisters Niamh and Grace Kelly (West Coast).