‘AFL Air’ the secret ingredient to revised footy fixture


    Chartered planes have become the AFL’s secret ingredient to organising the fixture amid strict health and safety protocols.

    With hotel stays to be kept to a minimum, teams forced to travel out of Victoria, New South Wales or the Queensland hub for games will fly in and fly out on the same day where possible.

    Just two teams – save for Gold Coast-based Fremantle and West Coast – have been called to leave their state in round two next month.

    On Sunday, June 14, the Kangaroos will face GWS at 1.05pm, while later that afternoon the Swans will host the Bombers at the SCG.

    North and Essendon will fly to Sydney together on Sunday morning and fly back to Melbourne on the same plane later that night.

    It means both teams will wait hours before or after their games to assist the AFL in its cost-saving exercise.

    “We’ll put two teams on the aircraft where we can,” fixturing boss Travis Auld told 7NEWS.

    “We see in round two, two of the Victorian teams up to Sydney to play, they’ll go on the same flight and come back on the same flight, given they’ll be chartered.

    “That took a little bit of extra work, but it means we can charter flights and there’s still plenty of seats available for the two teams.”

    In round three, GWS and Sydney will head to Victoria for respective games against the Bulldogs on Friday night and North Melbourne on Saturday afternoon.

    It is unclear if the AFL will charter a plane for both NSW clubs to fly into Melbourne, stay in a hotel overnight and return to Sydney together the following day.

    A similar scenario awaits the Bulldogs and Collingwood in round four, with the Dogs booked to face the Swans on Thursday night and the Pies travelling to Homebush to battle the Giants on Friday night.

    In round five, the last of the fixtures set by the AFL on Monday, Melbourne and Hawthorn are likely to travel together for respective games against Sydney and GWS on Sunday, July 5.

    The fixtures for rounds six and seven will be announced at the conclusion of round three.

    Source: https://7news.com.au/sport/afl/chartered-planes-the-secret-ingredient-to-revised-afl-fixture-c-1058713

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