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AFL Fixture Explained

On-field equity is a key component of the AFL’s philosophy. As such, providing all clubs with the opportunity to be successful and contest the Toyota AFL Finals Series is a crucial element of the AFL fixture.

Given the AFL competition comprises a 23 round season involving 18 clubs playing 22 matches, it is not possible to achieve complete equity with all teams playing each opponent both home and away.

To best manage on field equity for all clubs under the current competition model, the 2016 fixture has again been constructed around the ‘weighted rule,’ whereby the final ladder from the previous season is grouped into the top six teams, middle six teams and bottom six teams, with double match-ups for all clubs managed as follows:

  • Top six: Clubs ranked 1-6 on the 2015 ladder will have a minimum of two and maximum of three return meetings with other top six clubs. They will have a minimum of one and maximum of two return meetings with clubs ranked 7-12. They will have either no return meetings or a maximum of one return meeting with clubs ranked 13-18.
     
  • Middle six: Clubs ranked 7-12 on the 2015 ladder will have a minimum of one and maximum of two return meetings with clubs ranked 1-6 on the ladder. They will have a minimum of two and maximum of three return meetings with other middle six clubs. They will have a minimum of one and maximum of two return meetings with clubs ranked 13-18.
     
  • Bottom six: Clubs ranked 13-18 on the 2015 ladder will have either no return meeting or a maximum of one return meeting with clubs ranked 1-6. They will have a minimum of one or a maximum of two return meetings with clubs ranked 7-12. They will have a minimum of two and a maximum of three return meetings with other bottom six clubs.

 

AFL Fixture weighted rule