Off the wall idea - pre-GF bye and State of Origin matches

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lockheed

Club Legend
Oct 22, 2005
1,394
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Night Vale
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North Melbourne
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Don't know if the AFL will continue with pre-grand final byes in the future. They certainly seem fairer for the two top four teams that win their first final.

If the bye is to become a permanent feature, why not schedule state of origin matches for the pre-grand final weekend. Obviously players from the GF teams wouldn't be available.

Selected players from the teams that didn't play finals would have a few weeks to refresh and recover from niggles. Hopefully some of the players from losing finalists would make themselves available. Two matches during this weekend would surely get great ratings, clicks and therefore dollars.

And if the AFL were exceedingly greedy, the two winners from the 'bye' weekend could play their grand final on the Friday night.

It's certainly not ideal as some of the very best players wouldn't be available. But the reality is that, currently, we may never see state of origin games again.
 

outwecome2play

Senior List
Sep 1, 2015
230
520
AFL Club
North Melbourne
The pre-GF bye is an interesting one. If both Melbourne and Port had won there would be no difference. The fact that the Bulldogs won has changed things. Normally a side coming from the 5-8 positions would have to play every week. In this case the Bulldogs are getting a week off to refresh.
This could throw an advantage to them as Melbourne hasn't played as many games.
In regard to the state of origin idea i don't think it would work.
 

Val Keating

Brownlow Medallist
Dec 27, 2017
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Most of the best players would be knackerd from the finals and the ones that didn’t play finals would have trained off a lot. A lot of players are carrying niggles this time of year as well.
 

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discodaddy

Team Captain
Jun 13, 2011
472
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Canberra
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There are no others
Don't know if the AFL will continue with pre-grand final byes in the future. They certainly seem fairer for the two top four teams that win their first final.

If the bye is to become a permanent feature, why not schedule state of origin matches for the pre-grand final weekend. Obviously players from the GF teams wouldn't be available.

Selected players from the teams that didn't play finals would have a few weeks to refresh and recover from niggles. Hopefully some of the players from losing finalists would make themselves available. Two matches during this weekend would surely get great ratings, clicks and therefore dollars.

And if the AFL were exceedingly greedy, the two winners from the 'bye' weekend could play their grand final on the Friday night.

It's certainly not ideal as some of the very best players wouldn't be available. But the reality is that, currently, we may never see state of origin games again.
A U23 game could be interesting, but I don’t know how you manage any game given that the season ended for most teams weeks ago.
 

lockheed

Club Legend
Oct 22, 2005
1,394
2,397
Night Vale
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North Melbourne
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North Melbourne
Most of the best players would be knackerd from the finals and the ones that didn’t play finals would have trained off a lot. A lot of players are carrying niggles this time of year as well.
You're almost certainly right.

One possible workaround might be to announce coaches and large squads, for each of the four teams, before the last round, and to offer generous payments for those selected players who keep training.

Between the chance to play for a state team and the money, hopefully enough players will want to participate.

With perhaps an U22 or U23 match as a curtain raiser. Again, the participating players would need to be generously remunerated to make it worth their while.

A key factor would be whether the public would get on board to support the games, given that some of the best players wouldn't be participating. If there is enough interest, and the league and broadcasters can see the way to make a lot of money, then who knows what might be possible.
 

Val Keating

Brownlow Medallist
Dec 27, 2017
14,572
31,396
AFL Club
North Melbourne
You're almost certainly right.

One possible workaround might be to announce coaches and large squads, for each of the four teams, before the last round, and to offer generous payments for those selected players who keep training.

Between the chance to play for a state team and the money, hopefully enough players will want to participate.

With perhaps an U22 or U23 match as a curtain raiser. Again, the participating players would need to be generously remunerated to make it worth their while.

A key factor would be whether the public would get on board to support the games, given that some of the best players wouldn't be participating. If there is enough interest, and the league and broadcasters can see the way to make a lot of money, then who knows what might be possible.
It’s an interesting idea and I wish we still had SOO but I just don’t see the buy in from the clubs or the players.
 

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D23D

Premium Gold
Apr 27, 2008
2,250
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I think it would be good for it to stay but get rid of the pre finals bye at the same time.
They could make the between weekend a big event by playing the vfl and potentially other state gf’s then before gearing up for the big one
Also, it means someone concussed in the prelim still gets the chance to realise their dream
 

Val Keating

Brownlow Medallist
Dec 27, 2017
14,572
31,396
AFL Club
North Melbourne
2 weeks of solid wall2wall media > circus.
In regular non covid years, it’d be the perfect time to play the junior champs. Really hype it up too. Most non gf club supporters are wondering who they’re going to draft the following year… so building up the champs is a no brainer for me…but it’s never worked. We just don’t get the hype here for draftees like they do in the US.
 

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