Gold Coast chief executive Andrew Travis wants an AFL Women’s team at the Suns, but he can’t see it happening for at least another five years.
Travis was a keen observer of every game the opening round of the women’s competition last week, which saw Ikon Park sold out and television ratings exceed all expectations.
The Suns told the AFL last year they didn’t believe they were ready for a female side when the league came clubs last year, but Travis said they won’t make the same call next time.
“We’re really keen to have our own team down the track,” Travis said.
“The participation of females in Queensland is leading the way right across the country.”
Since opting against fielding a side this season, the Gold Coast have launched an under-17s academy for girls as well as taken an increased role in female pathways.
The region won the under-17s state championships last December, and Travis has vowed to remain in contact with the AFL about if, and when, the club can be added.
However he believes the local programs, as well as the women’s competition itself, must be given the chance to grow naturally before expansion is given anywhere.
“I would think it wouldn’t be before three years, but more than likely five years” he said.
“The Big Bash is a good example where they are going slow on the expansion of teams.
“They obviously have their reasons for that, they’ve done their research and they’re saying we’re going to go slow.”
It comes after the Suns’ young leader Touk Miller called for the club to have a side in the competition in the coming years earlier this week.
“All the boys in the changerooms were talking about how hard they go in and how good quality the was,” Miller said.
“For us we probably want to get the boys lifting off a little bit, but I can’t imagine that we’re not going to have a girls’ team in the next few years.”