Women's Footy

Rule Changes for 2019 SANFLW Season

More players on the field and the introduction of the anti-density rule are among a host of law changes applied to the SANFL Statewide Super Women’s League in 2019.

After observing trends across the opening two seasons of the SANFLW competition, SANFL Management has now had its list of proposed changes endorsed by the SA Football Commission.

Significantly, SANFLW teams will now field 18 players on the field, up from 16 in the opening two seasons while also having two fewer players on the interchange bench – now four, down from six.

The anti-density rule – currently in operation for the Torrens Uni U18 and U16 competitions – will also be rolled out, ensuring that at any stoppage or kick-in, teams are required to ensure at least five players remain inside their forward half with two of those five players inside the 50-metre arc.

”The spreading of players was a key consideration in increasing the number of players on the field from 16 to 18,” SANFL General Manager of Football Adam Kelly said.

”The additional numbers will allow more effective connection between players as they transition the ball up and down the ground.

”Following consultation with SANFL clubs, who have been accustomed to the anti-density rule in the Men’s Under 16 and Under 18 competitions, we believe the anti-density rule will positively contribute to the spreading of players across the field.

”And in doing so, this will reduce congestion around stoppages and provide more options forward of the ball, including opportunities for one-on-one contests.”

Boundary umpires will also move in 10 metres from the boundary line before each throw-in to assist with reducing repeat stoppages and encouraging the ball to move through the middle of the field.

SANFLW will continue to mirror the Men’s competition in retaining the Last Possession Out of Bounds rule and adopting all of the recent rule changes introduced for the SANFL Statewide Super League in 2019.

These include the implementation of a traditional player set up at each centre bounce, relaxing of the rules for kicking in after a behind and the repealing of the Hands in the Back interpretation. Click here for more information.


  1. Adjustment to the 22-player Match Day squad, inclusive of 18 players on the field and four on the interchange bench.
  2. Introduction of the anti-density rule. At any stoppage or kick-in, five players must be inside forward half with two inside the 50m arc.
  3. Boundary throw-ins occur 10m inside the boundary line.
  4. Adoption of all rule changes implemented for the Men’s SANFL Statewide Super League in 2019.
  5. Retention of the Last Possession Out of Bounds rule.
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