Rosie Dillon has come a long way from when she first arrived at the Hawks in 2017.
At just 20 years old, Dillon joined Hawthorn’s inaugural VFLW team, with Coach Paddy Hill seeing potential in the midfielder.
In the three years she has played in the brown and gold, Dillon has shown immense improvement and development.
She has since become one of the league’s most talented players having had a break-out season in 2019.
“I kind of pulled my finger out a bit, just buying into the program and working harder,” Dillon told the Herald Sun on Thursday morning.
“The past couple of years I’ve been a bit lazy, I got really big and really unfit.
“I got a bit sick of people saying ‘imagine how good you’d be if you got fit’.”
Playing all 14 games for the season, Dillon averaged 17.1 disposals and 5.6 tackles and earned herself a spot on the VFLW’s Team of the Year.
To top off her incredible season she was named as Hawthorn’s VFLW best and fairest after polling 49 votes ahead of Rebecca Beeson (47 votes) and Lou Wotton (36 votes).
“It’s been a bit of a whirlwind,” she said.
“Especially when I didn’t think I’d win it.”
Standing at just 153cm she is considered as a small inside-mid, but isn’t worried about what people may consider a ‘height disadvantage’.
“You know what, it doesn’t feel like I’m 153cm when I’m playing.
“One coach told me once, ‘when the ball’s on the ground, you have a lot less distance to bend down than a taller person’.”
Unlike many of her fellow teammates, football has been a part of her life since a very young age.
“I played footy ever since I was a little girl, starting with Auskick,” she said.
“But VFL is a whole new experience.
"You play a lot smarter, you do a lot less needless running and you learn so much about the pattern of the game.”
Dillon, alongside many other hopefuls, will be anxiously waiting for her name to be called out at next week's AFLW National Draft.
“I’m bloody nervous,” Dillon laughed.
“I’ve spoken to a couple of clubs but there’s no promises.
“When they do talk to you it’s more to see what kind of a person you are, they’ve already seen you playing.
“I’m just praying to God I get a chance.”