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AFLW: Marinoff celebrates her ‘birthday week’ at first training

Season begins for Crows AFLW Crows AFLW players hit the track for their first pre-season training
If you told 15-year-old me that at 20 years old I’d be heading into my third [AFLW] pre-season, I’d tell you you're dreaming
Ebony Marinoff

On the eve of her 21st birthday, Adelaide gun Ebony Marinoff joined her teammates for the first AFLW pre-season training on Wednesday night.

A day out from celebrating the milestone, the inaugural AFLW Rising Star reflected on how far she’d come.

“If you told 15-year-old me that at 20 years old I’d be heading into my third [AFLW] pre-season, I’d tell you you're dreaming,” she said.

The festivities for her 21st started last weekend, something she referred to as her ‘birthday week’.

“Well, pre-season starts tonight so I couldn’t really celebrate too much this weekend coming so did most of it before today and on the weekend,” she said.

“But we’ll still celebrate tomorrow [Thursday] just a bit more low-key… I’ve got breakfast, lunch and dinner plans so lucky I had skinfolds today [Wednesday].”

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MY DAY!!!!

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Coming into her third AFLW season, the now 21-year-old said it was an exciting chance for her to step up as a mentor to the new draftees.

“It’s an awesome feeling [to be back]… obviously, it’s been a long time waiting as we haven’t been together since the end of March so it’s a pretty exciting vibe around here tonight,” she said.

“I’m keen to see the young guns we’ve picked up and I can’t wait to see the likes of Chloe Scheer and Nikki Gore step out onto the field.”New draftees Nikki Gore and Chloe Scheer in action at the first AFLW pre-season training

“I’d tell them [draftees] just to work hard, it doesn’t matter where you are in the group conditioning or on the field, just ask questions, use your voice and don’t give up – that’s all the coach can really ask for.”

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As for who she was most looking forward to seeing back in action, Marinoff said she could not go past co-captain Chelsea Randall.

“She [Randall] has obviously been away during the winter but she’s come back and done a mountain of work over the past six weeks so I’m really excited to see her back,” she said.

Personally, Marinoff said she wanted to improve on her fitness, speed and disposal efficiency this pre-season.

“I’m hoping to be a bit faster around the ground this season and hopefully I can get a goal on the board as I haven’t scored a goal yet,” she said.

“I’ll play wherever the team needs me to play but hopefully I get to play a couple of different positions this year and add another string to my bow.”