Sydney has experienced a deluge of rain in recent weeks, but it won’t dampen the work ethic of new recruit Kiara Hillier.

Hailing from the Sunshine Coast, the Sydney Swans secured the young defender in a trade with the Brisbane Lions during the 2023 season.

Speaking to Sydney Swans Media Hillier says that while she continues to adjust to moving from friends and family (and wet weather training), she’s enjoying the new challenge.

“It’s been really enjoyable so far and everyone’s been really welcoming,” she said during week five of pre-season training.


The Lions Academy product is yet to make her AFLW debut but appeared in red and white for the VFLW. The club was invited to participate in five matches against Melbourne teams, winning four from five outings.

AFLW head coach Scott Gowans praised the defender’s rebounding ability in a season review. The 19-year-old also hopes to showcase her team-first approach in the coming weeks.

“I learnt so much from Scott and how we play as a team and I learnt a lot about my teammates and how they play,” Hillier noted.

“I do just want to play my role and show what I can do - my runoff halfback and my rebounding - but also whatever the team needs from me."

"Hopefully I can step up and play in that role.”

Hillier is one of five new faces in the side. She joins former Gold Coast Suns defender Giselle Davies, QBE Sydney Swans Academy product Holly Cooper and draftees Sarah Grunden and Laura Hausegger. 

The AFLW squad are travelling to Newcastle this July to take part in a community camp. The opportunity will not only be a chance to give back to the sport but develop the team’s connection off-field.

“It'll be a good camp for us to get to know each other a bit more and sort out our values and how we work as a team and what we're looking for going forward to Round 1.”

The Swans will open the 2024 NAB AFLW season when they take on Collingwood at North Sydney Oval on August 30.

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