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Victorian Stadium Capacity Boost Ahead Of AFL Season Opener

V
ictorian Premier, Daniel Andrews, is set to confirm today a change to crowd capacity, with an increase of up to 50% allowed into stadiums, just in time for the AFL season opener.

Commencing Thursday March 4, Community Series pre-season games at Marvel Stadium can host up to 28,961 patrons, whilst the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) will be able to host 50,000 spectators for round one where Richmond will host Carlton.

Crowd capacity’s for GMHBA Stadium and Mars Stadium are still in the works.

This is the largest crowd capacity allowed at a sporting event in Victoria since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Attention now turns to west, with AFL chief financial officer and general manager, Travis Auld admitting the league may have to scrap its current fixture list, as a result of two more community cases of transmission in Victoria on Friday.

“What I do know is we will explore every opportunity,” Auld said.

“It’s what we did last year.

“We have to start the season and when we encounter some speed humps we will find our way around those and I am confident that as an organisation and industry we will be working with our partners and players and clubs to work through it,” he said.

Current rules for Western Australia mean sides from the state would have to quarantine for 14 days, with multiple fixtures in the opening rounds unable to realistically go ahead with the current restrictions.

Auld said he, and the league, are trying to work through the situation logistically.

“The challenge will be Fremantle coming to Victoria to play Melbourne,” Auld said.

“It presents an issue as it stands for Fremantle going back to Western Australia, they would have to quarantine.

“Our goal is to work through the fixture to the extent we can but clearly we have to work with those clubs and the Western Australian government to see if there is a better solution without compromising the health of the community,” he said.