Amy McDonald best and fairest for 2021

Geelong Cats AFLW best and fairest winner Amy McDonald in action against Richmond. (Marcel Berens)

Midfielder Amy McDonald has won Geelong Cats’ AFLW best and fairest medal, almost doubling second-placed Meghan McDonald’s votes.

Hailing from Ballarat, Amy was selected at pick 80 in the 2019 AFLW draft following a standout VFLW season with Geelong, when she was named in the VFLW Team of the Year.

Amy stood out in a disappointing 2021 season for the Cats, playing all nine games and averaging 20 disposals and seven tackles.

Her versatility has allowed her to alternate between playing halfback, wing and inside midfielder over her 15-game career.

“Amy worked really hard throughout winter last year to improve her skills and fitness,” Cats AFLW coach Paul Hood said.

“Her outstanding training ethic has played a big part in getting her to where she is today.

“Her confidence has grown significantly over the course of her two seasons of AFLW and she now has the belief in her ability to influence games.

“Amy is tenacious in her attack on the football; her great tackle pressure sees her win the ball. She is improving rapidly but still far from reaching her eventual ceiling.”

Amy earned 71 votes for 2021, ahead of Meghan (36) and Becky Webster (34) and Renee Garing and Olivia Purcell (tied on 25).

Georgie Rankin won the Hoops Award for giving back to the community through club initiatives and her care for teammates, coaches and staff.

Renee Garing and Steph Williams shared the Carter Family Community Champion Award for 2021

Throughout 2021, Garing continued her work as a club Just Think ambassador and volunteer for the Pretty Foundation, Salvation Army and Fight Cancer Foundation.

She also volunteered for initiatives like Barwon Health Foundation’s Virtual Run 4 Geelong event.

Williams was the face of the AFLW Cats’ first Djilang Game, working alongside the club to promote the inaugural AFLW Indigenous Round and the Geelong guernsey.

Williams took the opportunity to educate players and staff from her personal experiences and stories, and attended Geelong Gallery’s storytelling of Wadawurrung woman Corrina Eccles.

Soon after being drafted, Steph took Geelong Cats merchandise back to the community of Belyuen in the Northern Territory.