AFL to shorten pre-season for AFLX



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    The AFL is considering shortening next year’s pre-season series to accommodate its new hybrid game, AFLX.

    The shorter game, with smaller teams played on soccer-pitch sized grounds, has been likened to the AFL’s version of Twenty20 cricket.

    The league had toyed with the idea of having the bottom 10 teams play a tournament on the bye weekend before this year’s finals series, but decided against the move.

    Public interest in the AFL pre-season series has waned over the past decade.

    The league stopped awarding a trophy to the winner of its pre-season competition in 2013, preferring instead to allow teams to warm up for the season with three pre-season matches each.

    “We’d like to put an AFLX weekend in prior to the (pre-season competition) series … I think that has support from the club’s and I’m confident that will happen,” AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan said.

    “We’ve got to finalise that and we’ve got to work with broadcasters and sponsors on the final configuration of the (pre-season) series.

    “If it’s two or three (games) – wherever it lands – I think we’ll still do something with AFLX.”

    The league’s pre-season conundrum also includes the best positioning of the second AFL Women’s season.

    Adelaide defeated Brisbane at Metricon Stadium to claim the inaugural AFLW premiership on the same weekend this year’s men’s competition opened, which is not the AFL’s ideal scenario.

    “We would like for the grand final to be in clean air the week before the opening round,” McLachlan said.

    “The challenge with that is you then come forward a week and you have to open the (AFLW) season on the Australia Day long weekend.

    “That’s a three-day weekend when a lot of people are away and it’s the final of the (Australian Open) tennis.”

    A decision on AFLW scheduling will be made in the coming weeks, along with the make-up of the competition with the AFL to decide which clubs will be granted entry to the league at commission meeting in late August.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (9)

    • August 11th 2017 @ 10:16am
      I ate pies said | August 11th 2017 @ 10:16am | ! Report

      Nooooooooooooo…footy doesn’t need revamping. Leave the bloody game alone.

      • August 11th 2017 @ 11:06am
        I ate pies said | August 11th 2017 @ 11:06am | ! Report

        Also, how is playing a poxy hybrid game meant to help the players prepare for the regular season? Remember what the purpose of the preseason comp is? Again the AFL is putting money ahead of the integrity of the competition.

        • August 11th 2017 @ 2:40pm
          Trevor said | August 11th 2017 @ 2:40pm | ! Report

          As far as I am aware, the purpose of the pre-season is to work out the best value SuperCoach selections.

        • August 11th 2017 @ 3:54pm
          Rissole said | August 11th 2017 @ 3:54pm | ! Report

          This is just ridiculous. Comparing it to T20 cricket also makes no sense, T20 is still cricket, just shortened.

          This…. this is an abomination. I’m not sure if I’m just out of touch with reality, but I can’t see how anyone would be genuinely interested in this proposed game.

        • August 12th 2017 @ 11:22pm
          Martin said | August 12th 2017 @ 11:22pm | ! Report

          Is Australia going to have yet another football code in AFLX? We already have two rugby codes, soccer, AFL and now this proposed fifth football code. The only country in the world that has four football codes is trying yet to make it five. As if the sponsorship dollar isn’t already stretched enough with the four.
          Although I shouldn’t worry because I can’t imagine AFLX gaining any traction.

          Playing AFLW matches the same weekend as the Australian Tennis Open should be fine because I don’t think that many people follow the tennis.

    • August 11th 2017 @ 12:20pm
      Birdman said | August 11th 2017 @ 12:20pm | ! Report

      Better hope no-one gets injured playing this hit and giggle hybrid. Oh and ffs, don’t run it head to head against the AFLW

    • August 11th 2017 @ 1:15pm
      dan said | August 11th 2017 @ 1:15pm | ! Report

      which soccer fields will they be using?

      • August 12th 2017 @ 11:23am
        Batca said | August 12th 2017 @ 11:23am | ! Report

        Plenty of room at nib stadium now

    • August 12th 2017 @ 4:54pm
      Ken Spacey said | August 12th 2017 @ 4:54pm | ! Report

      Soccer sized pitches do not require soccer pitches. You just resize existing AFL grounds. I am constantly assured that sitting 70 metres from the nearest player does not diminish the spectator experience so here’s the AFL fan’s chance to prove that.

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