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GVFL grand final to be played in October

After the AFL fixture moved its draw back to compensate for the cricket World Cup, the GVFL has followed suit.

ERIN LYONS August 11, 2014 3:24am

Next year, there will not be ‘that one day in September’.

The AFL recently announced the 2015 AFL grand final will be played on the first Saturday in October, instead of its traditional last Saturday in September.

The AFL’s decision will have an impact on the Goulburn Valley Football Netball League 2015 fixture.

The GVFNL intends to maintain its tradition and will still play the grand final on the Sunday following the AFL grand final.

But as a result of the AFL’s decision it has now revised the 2015 fixture.

GVFNL general manager Keith Wellman said the league was intent on protecting its ritual.

‘‘We have moved the grand final to the first Sunday in October, because I guess we try to hold that tradition,’’ Wellman said.

‘‘The game has always been played the day after the grand final for about 30 years or so.’’

The GVFNL’s main concern was trying to schedule an extra split round if the season was to kick off a week later than usual.

‘‘The biggest issue is trying to fit in the extra round,’’ Wellman said.

‘‘We had the whole fixture set because we didn’t know that the AFL final had been moved.

‘‘Now we have to revise the whole thing.’’

Wellman said he would not have a clear indication of what the 2015 fixture would look like until he heard back from each of the clubs in the league.

‘‘We’ve had to send an email out to all the clubs about this issue asking which week they want to play,’’ he said.

The league also faces the possibility of missing the Easter weekend, which could be a huge blow to the clubs which would usually play on Easter Saturday.

In the past, Echuca has hosted an Easter Saturday clash.

‘‘We don’t know who will have the Easter game yet, it will just depend on how the draw is situated at the moment,’’ Wellman said.

‘‘It could go to anyone, but could end up with Rochester.’’

While the league was taking the opinions of each club into account, it could cause some complications.

‘‘We have asked all the clubs if they would rather have a bye over the Easter weekend,’’ Wellman said.

‘‘If the clubs would rather have the bye over Easter, it will be more difficult because we’d have to add in an extra spilt round.

‘‘But if they are happy to play over that period it would solve the situation.

‘‘We should have it finalised in about three weeks time.’’

Wellman said the GVFNL would also have to factor that each of the western teams had to play each other by round four, the same for the eastern teams.

‘‘It’s not easy. We will revise the whole fixture,’’ Wellman said.

‘‘And we can’t rely on a draw because a draw just comes out of the computer. It doesn’t take into account the eastern and western sides.’’

The AFL move is to accommodate the Cricket World Cup, which will be held in Australia and New Zealand in February and March.

The move has had an effect on the sporting calendar, including a clash with the Turnbull Stakes, which is scheduled to take place on the same day.

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