Magpies aim to reverse slow AFLW starts

An AFLW coaching role with the Magpies has opened his eyes, says Lynden Dunn.
An AFLW coaching role with the Magpies has opened his eyes, says Lynden Dunn.

Collingwood know better than anyone in the AFLW that a slow start is disastrous.

The Magpies have opened the first two seasons with three-straight losses, dooming them to mid-table finishes.

So winning early is a top priority as they head into the third season in February and a new conference system.

"We've struggled with that in the last two years," assistant coach Lynden Dunn said on Wednesday.

"Without putting too much pressure on ourselves, we know you don't get very long to make a mark in the competition."

Dunn is on staff again this season and well as continuing his AFL playing career.

He is enthusiastic about the women's chances, despite their modest results so far.

"I couldn't be more excited for the group we have this year - we're a lot younger, the girls are hungry," he said.

Dunn, 31, plans to keep playing for several seasons but said coaching has opened his eyes.

"I love coaching and the women's game, it's very different ... not a bad different," he said

"It's something I will pursue possibly when I finish playing but hopefully I don't have to worry about that for a few more years yet.

The women trained with the Collingwood men's team on Wednesday and captain Steph Chiocci said it was invaluable experience.

"Just to rub shoulders with the best of the best - they were runners-up, they have an elite standard and just running around with them, to see how they go about it," she said.

"It's the little things that they do well and the fundamentals."

Former netball star Sharni Layton has joined the Magpies and Chiocci said she could play anywhere on the ground.

"You'll hear her too, she's quite boisterous," Chiocci said.

"She's really versatile ... it will be very interesting to see."

Australian Associated Press