HOBART, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 03: Moana Hope of the Kangaroos celebrates her first goal as a Kangaroo during the 2019 NAB AFLW Round 01 match between the North Melbourne Tasmanian Kangaroos and the Carlton Blues at North Hobart Oval on February 03, 2019 in Hobart, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Former Collingwood and North Melbourne key forward Moana Hope announced via Instagram that mental health and family reasons have caused her to withdraw from the competition for 2020.

Having been drafted as an inaugural highly touted marquee by the Pies ahead of the 2017 season, Hope produced 15 goals in 13 games before switching to North Melbourne for their first campaign in 2019, contributing a further eight goals in seven appearances this year.

But in an emotional Instagram post Tuesday morning, shortly before the AFLW Draft was due to commence in Melbourne, Hope confirmed that she would step away from the game for the 2020 season in the hopes of starting a family with new wife Isabella Carlstrom, assuring her fans and followers that “this isn’t the end, this is just the beginning”.

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It's with a heavy heart that I've come to a decision about my participation in this year's AFLW season. After plenty of deliberating and reflecting with my family, I’ve decided to withdraw from the AFLW draft and take a year off. Since I was a little girl I’ve LOVED footy. Passion and love for the game has been what's always fueled me, but the last few seasons have taken a real toll on my mental health. It's time to take a step back from the game for now and focus on my family. Bell and I are hoping to be pregnant by Christmas, and with looking after Vinny and taking care of my Mum, family is my number one priority. I will get myself right both mentally and physically to pull on the boots in VFL 2020 and hopefully if all goes well I'll be back out in an AFLW jumper soon after. To all the little girls and boys who follow me, don’t worry this isn’t the end, this is just the beginning. 💕 I want to wish all of today’s draftees the best of luck, I hope all your dreams come true. 🙏 #aflw #myway

A post shared by Moana Hope (@moanahope) on

The post read, “It’s with a heavy heart that I’ve come to a decision about my participation in this year’s AFLW season.”

“After plenty of deliberating and reflecting with my family, I’ve decided to withdraw from the AFLW draft and take a year off.

“Since I was a little girl I’ve LOVED footy. Passion and love for the game has been what’s always fueled me, but the last few seasons have taken a real toll on my mental health.

“It’s time to take a step back from the game for now and focus on my family. Bell and I are hoping to be pregnant by Christmas, and with looking after Vinny and taking care of my Mum, family is my number one priority.

“I will get myself right mentally and physically to pull on the boots in VFLW 2020 and hopefully if all goes well I’ll be back out in an AFLW jumper soon after.

“I want to wish all of today’s draftees the best of luck, I hope all your dreams come true.”