Monday, April 19, 2021
Home Game How GWS' base could solve major AFL headache

How GWS’ base could solve major AFL headache

The GWS Giants call Canberra’s Manuka Oval home for four matches per season, now several Victorian teams could descend on the Bush Capital, as Victoria grapples with a rise in COVID-19 cases.

ACT Opposition Leader Alistair Coe said his party, the Canberra Liberals, has pitched the idea to the AFL.

“We’ll do everything we can to make this a reality,” Mr Coe said.

“This could take the form of perhaps four teams being based in Canberra, training here and potentially playing here for a number of weeks,” he said.

Mr Coe described the proposition as a “real boon for the ACT economy”, as each team would likely come with dozens of players, support staff and administrative staff needing hotel rooms in Canberra.

The GWS Giants conduct a training session at Manuka Oval in Canberra prior to a match last season (Supplied)

An ACT Government spokesperson said it had been contacted by the AFL “to understand our capacity to potentially host more AFL teams and matches at some stage this season”.

According to the spokesperson, the ACT Government is seeking “further information on the appropriate public health measures that would need to be in place for any arrangement to occur safely for both players and the Canberra community”.

The Territory’s Chief Minister Andrew Barr had previously told reporters his government “won’t be paying for Canberra to be used as a television backdrop without crowds.”

While an AFL spokesperson said it’s too early to comment on whether Canberra is being considered as a “quarantine hub” and the organisation is continuing to work with all states and territories on suitable alternatives.

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