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Victorian government to allow small crowd at Cats-Bulldogs game

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Geelong and the Western Bulldogs can play in front of a small AFL crowd after the Victorian government announced plans to ease COVID-19 restrictions.

Up to 7,000 fans will be able to attend Geelong’s AFL match against the Western Bulldogs after the Victorian government announced the easing of coronavirus restrictions.

Several restrictions will be eased across both metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria from 11.59pm on Thursday.

The AFL had earlier this week decided in consultation with Geelong to play Friday’s game at GMHBA Stadium with no fans but now a small crowd – up to 20 per cent capacity – will be on hand for the top-four clash.

Tickets are only available to Geelong and Western Bulldogs members, while those attending must reside in the Greater Geelong, Surf Coast, Queenscliffe or Colac Otway local government areas.

Acting Premier James Merlino and Victoria’s Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said crowds were still unable to return to games in Melbourne.

There are no AFL games scheduled in the Victorian capital this week.

The AFL had previously moved North Melbourne’s clash with Brisbane from Marvel Stadium to Hobart, while Hawthorn and Essendon will play in Launceston instead of at the MCG.

It is unclear what the decision regarding crowds in Melbourne means for both the A-League and the NBL.

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A-League premiers Melbourne City are scheduled to host Macarthur FC in their home semi-final at AAMI Park on Sunday.

NBL minor premiers Melbourne United have earned the right to host three of the five-game grand final series against Perth Wildcats.

Perth are due to host the first two games this week with United’s three home games yet to be scheduled.

© AAP

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