Pre Finals bye and Qualifying Final winners - 1 game in 28 days

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JayJ20

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The winner of Qualifying finals advance to Preliminary Finals.
The fact they do not have to win a semi-final is an advantage. That does not change. The break itself is not the advantage or disadvantage of itself.
All finals systems have had teams advance to more important finals and skip other finals in past too.
The disadvantage is really only to footy fans having a week with no football.
That is why the pre-finals bye should go.
There's a reason why SF winners hardly ever advanced to the grand final prior to the introduction of the pre-finals bye in 2016. The week off was a massive advantage, more so than home ground advantage.

From the 32 QF winners between 2000 and 2015, only Fremantle (2015), Adelaide (2006), St Kilda (2005) and Sydney (2003) missed the grand final. That's 28 wins and 4 losses.

Since the introduction of the pre-finals bye, it is 4 wins and 6 losses for the QF winners. Hard to argue against that.
 

Father Jack

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Why should it matter if a team who has guaranteed their place in the top eight rests players against those who haven't in the last round of the h & a fixture? Yes, it is an advantage but it is one that the team has earned by winning more games than their opponent.

It was bought in purely to appease the gambling companies because teams effectively resting 3-4 of their best players had implications on people betting. It should be scrapped.

Interestingly prior to the bye's introduction no team from outside the top 4 had made a grand final in the current finals system (introduced in 2000). Since it's introduction we've had 2 teams make it from outside the top 4.
Well no, they don't necessarily get their advantage by winning more games, they get it via a quirk. Let's say one team is still fighting for a spot in the top 4, miss out and finish 5th while another team was locked into finishing 8th regardless of results in the last round, why should the team that is 8th get an advantage? Or, maybe there are two teams fighting for a spot in the 8, one comes up against a team that is resting players, and the other doesn't. Is that fair?

I completely understand why the pre-finals bye is there and I think it's necessary, otherwise you get compromised games leading up to the finals. Again, maybe the bye should be before round 22 or 23, maybe that would protect the advantages of the QF winners.
 

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Allezjuel

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I don't think it's a disadvantage to win the QF to get the week off with the pre-finals bye. However it definitely means winning the QF is now a lot less important than it once was, as now every single teams gets a bye prior to the finals, having the week off in the finals is no longer the massive advantage it once was. This is why I think they should scrap it, the bye gives more reward to the mediocre teams, the top 8 system should be that the teams that were better all year should have an easier run. It also means the results of the QF don't really matter that much anymore.
 

ozaddy

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Well no, they don't necessarily get their advantage by winning more games, they get it via a quirk. Let's say one team is still fighting for a spot in the top 4, miss out and finish 5th while another team was locked into finishing 8th regardless of results in the last round, why should the team that is 8th get an advantage? Or, maybe there are two teams fighting for a spot in the 8, one comes up against a team that is resting players, and the other doesn't. Is that fair?

I completely understand why the pre-finals bye is there and I think it's necessary, otherwise you get compromised games leading up to the finals. Again, maybe the bye should be before round 22 or 23, maybe that would protect the advantages of the QF winners.
Possibly not only a threat but a carry through with match fixing penalties (such as points lost to start the following season) should deter clubs from doing a "Freo" in the last game of the round. I've thought this well before Port and Brisbane were disadvantaged this year. This year with shortened quarters probably made it even worse, but the "rested" team going on statistics alone show that it makes a differences.
 

living_in_syd

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There's a reason why SF winners hardly ever advanced to the grand final prior to the introduction of the pre-finals bye in 2016. The week off was a massive advantage, more so than home ground advantage.

From the 32 QF winners between 2000 and 2015, only Fremantle (2015), Adelaide (2006), St Kilda (2005) and Sydney (2003) missed the grand final. That's 28 wins and 4 losses.

Since the introduction of the pre-finals bye, it is 4 wins and 6 losses for the QF winners. Hard to argue against that.
So basically richmond did it the hard way? We were 2 of those 4 wins (2017,2019) and 1 of those 6 (in 2018) since the pre finals bye introduced. Could have had 2018 then, terrible slow start!
 

Duskfire

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There's a reason why SF winners hardly ever advanced to the grand final prior to the introduction of the pre-finals bye in 2016. The week off was a massive advantage, more so than home ground advantage.

From the 32 QF winners between 2000 and 2015, only Fremantle (2015), Adelaide (2006), St Kilda (2005) and Sydney (2003) missed the grand final. That's 28 wins and 4 losses.

Since the introduction of the pre-finals bye, it is 4 wins and 6 losses for the QF winners. Hard to argue against that.
Yup its hard to argue with that. Maybe the AFL likes that though. They probably look at Bulldogs in 2016 as a good thing (and to some extent it was a great finals series.) maybe they don’t mind it gives other teams a greater chance, makes the final series more unpredictable.
 

footyfan1978

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There's a reason why SF winners hardly ever advanced to the grand final prior to the introduction of the pre-finals bye in 2016.
The reason why any team from SF is less likely to advance is simply because on most times, they are not as good, pre-finals bye or not.
But there are far more variables involved that just byes etc. When the ladder order is not a true reflection, that also plays into all the variables. This year in particular. The best two teams got there in the end despite the disadvantages in their way. Real pity it not fair dinkum length finals.
 

estibador

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Possibly not only a threat but a carry through with match fixing penalties (such as points lost to start the following season) should deter clubs from doing a "Freo" in the last game of the round.
That's ridiculous. Why shouldn't a team be free to use whatever players they have in their squad as they see fit?

The players out there are still trying, they aren't throwing the game. And where are you going to draw the line at which players are genuinely banged up and need a rest?

This whole 'issue' causing the kneejerk introduction of a pre-finals bye was a massive overreaction in the first place.
 

Father Jack

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That's ridiculous. Why shouldn't a team be free to use whatever players they have in their squad as they see fit?

The players out there are still trying, they aren't throwing the game. And where are you going to draw the line at which players are genuinely banged up and need a rest?

This whole 'issue' causing the kneejerk introduction of a pre-finals bye was a massive overreaction in the first place.
Hardly a 'massive' overreaction, and arguable if it were an overreaction at all. Do you think the resting of players made no difference?
 

ozaddy

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That's ridiculous. Why shouldn't a team be free to use whatever players they have in their squad as they see fit?

The players out there are still trying, they aren't throwing the game. And where are you going to draw the line at which players are genuinely banged up and need a rest?

This whole 'issue' causing the kneejerk introduction of a pre-finals bye was a massive overreaction in the first place.
I think Ross Lyon should have been given a life time ban for it. It was against the spirit and integrity of the competition and in the end the AFL said never again and introduced the bye which has caused its own problems.
 

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estibador

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Hardly a 'massive' overreaction, and arguable if it were an overreaction at all. Do you think the resting of players made no difference?
Does it make a difference when teams play youth instead of (currently) better veterans?

How about sending stars off for surgery a few weeks early once finals are out of reach so they're ready for day 1 of preseason?

Or how about situations like at Freo this year when we took Fyfe out of his best position to give us a chance to blood youngsters in there?

In all situations the team is still giving an honest effort to win. Are you going to hand out match-fixing penalties for these too? Should we just let the AFL control team selection and match-day moves for all clubs?
 

Father Jack

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Does it make a difference when teams play youth instead of (currently) better veterans?

How about sending stars off for surgery a few weeks early once finals are out of reach so they're ready for day 1 of preseason?

Or how about situations like at Freo this year when we took Fyfe out of his best position to give us a chance to blood youngsters in there?

In all situations the team is still giving an honest effort to win. Are you going to hand out match-fixing penalties for these too? Should we just let the AFL control team selection and match-day moves for all clubs?
I'm not advocating for match-fixing penalties, I'm just saying that something had to be done to prevent the finals being undermined by teams going in with vastly different preparation depending on random permutations of ladder positions.
 

Gunf

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Remove the damn bye it is stupid and only put in place for betting agencies

But if they continue to have it at least put the freaking Brownlow on that weak and not in the middle of finals
 

Duskfire

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Teams had been doing it forever, not sure why Ross Lyon got singled out for it. Heck, in 2009 Geelong and the Saints were so far ahead of the rest of the competition that they spent half the season resting players. Geelong went from being undefeated to losing a few they shouldn’t have because of this. Not sure why that wasn’t a problem back then.
 

CaptchaProofBot

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you might have to take COVID into account. The body may have adapted to several games in a coupla weeks, ie. footy frenzy...then BANG...1 game in 2-3 weeks, this is going from one extreme to the other too abruptly.

So THIS year, the bye may have had a more pronounced effect on the winners with the extra week off.

While in all previous years, doesn't matter what final/bye system, it was pretty much steady as she goes....

some fixtures data:

Bris:
Friday September 4
Wednesday September 9
Sunday September 13
Saturday September 19
BYE
Friday October 2 won
Saturday October 17 eliminated

Port:
Saturday August 8
Friday August 14
Saturday August 22
Saturday August 29
Saturday September 5
Saturday September 12
Monday September 21
BYE
Thursday October 1 won
Friday October 16 eliminated

You could make a case for Bris as they had a relatively condensed period of games then abruptly 1 game in a long period
while for Port, it's harder to use COVID/condensed schedule as a possible reason as their schedule was pretty much ideal...1 game a week leading up to finals...and virtually 0 injuries.
(infact Port's fixtures for the entire season is pretty much spread out evenly).
 

sobrave

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You could make a case for Bris as they had a relatively condensed period of games then abruptly 1 game in a long period
while for Port, it's harder to use COVID/condensed schedule as a possible reason as their schedule was pretty much ideal...1 game a week leading up to finals...and virtually 0 injuries.
(infact Port's fixtures for the entire season is pretty much spread out evenly).
Wow, that's a great achievement that we managed to have a normal fixture in a compressed season. Congratulations to ken Hinkley on breaking the laws of time and space!
 

Father Jack

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Teams had been doing it forever, not sure why Ross Lyon got singled out for it. Heck, in 2009 Geelong and the Saints were so far ahead of the rest of the competition that they spent half the season resting players. Geelong went from being undefeated to losing a few they shouldn’t have because of this. Not sure why that wasn’t a problem back then.
What makes you think that it wasn't taken into account? It was definitely part of an observed trend, and is now something you really don't see anymore, now that we have mid-season byes.

FWIW back in '09 I bought a Lions ticket where I could nominate three games to go to, I picked the Geelong game as one of them and was mightily disappointed when they sent a threadbare side up that didn't really end up competing
 

Handsuper47

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It's hard for me to see an issue with this - Tigers 2017 + 2019 and Eagles 2018 all won the premiership when the pre-finals bye was active and they all won the qualifying week. Giants/Cats won their QF's in 2016 botched it, as did Lions/Power this year, Tigers in 2018 and Magpies in 2019. Doesn't seem like a big enough sample size.. or maybe, just maybe, those teams just weren't good enough.
 

THE EQUALIZER

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It seems to be a pretty easy solution to satisfy teams and head office about returning balance to the fixture.

Schedule the first 17 games and play each other once.

Every team gets their first bye in the three weeks leading up to indigenous round.

The final 5 rounds are scheduled in July and played over 6 weeks with byes inserted during the bulk of August.

Teams will have a minimum 3 h&a games before finals and a maximum of 5.

Staggered byes should benefit contenders getting a 3 game lead-in, whilst the pretenders and also-rans getting the 4 or 5 game lead-in, if they make finals. Little point in resting players in the final round with 2 games under their belt.

Scheduling the final 5 games so late, gives the AFL flexibility to stick with the Thursday night final they seem to love so much.

You're welcome. No charge.
 

Dylan8

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You only really have to look at the success of prelim winners before and after the implementation of the bye to see it has had a negative effect. The point of getting top four and winning a prelim is to be rewarded with competitive advantages over the other teams, so if you can reasonably argue that you're actually disadvantaged for winning then it's an issue.

Wasn't the bye created because Ross Lyon rested players once in a dead rubber? It was a crap reactionary thing in the first place. I doubt they even considered the negative impacts it could have had.
 

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