Hawthorn has gone bang on the final day of the AFLW Expansion Signing period with the acquisition of Irish sensation Aileen Gilroy.

Since being recruited by North Melbourne as a rookie in 2019, Gilroy has played 28 games for the club as a defender.

She took her game to new heights in AFLW Season Six, finishing seventh in the Kangaroos’ best and fairest after averaging 12 disposals and playing every game.

Before taking up Australian Rules, the 29-year-old represented the Republic of Ireland in both Gaelic Football and Association Football, highlighting her expertise across multiple sports.

Hawthorn AFLW List Manager Mitchell Cashion said Gilroy’s commitment was crucial to the Hawks’ list build.

“Aileen is one of the premier defenders in the AFLW and we’re thrilled to have her in the brown and gold in Season Seven,” Cashion said.

“She has grown in leaps and bounds since entering the competition as a rookie in 2019 and we can’t wait to see her continue to develop her game under Bec Goddard’s leadership.

“The standards and expectations Aileen provides will be really important to the growth of our group.”

Gilroy’s signature adds to Hawthorn’s strong growing list, with Bridget Deed, Zoe Barbakos, Sophie Locke, Dominique Carbone, Eliza Shannon, Tegan Cunningham, Tilly Lucas-Rodd, Jess Duffin, Akec Makur Chuot, Janet Baird, Louise Stephenson, Sarah Perkins, Tamara Luke, Jenna Richardson and Tahlia Fellows all set to don the brown and gold.