The AFL wishes to advise the fixture for week three of the 2012 Toyota AFL Finals Series will be as follows (all times are LOCAL):
Friday September 21
Second Preliminary Final - Sydney Swans v Winner Collingwood/West Coast at ANZ Stadium, 7.50pm (Live into Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth on Seven and Fox Footy and Live into Sydney and Brisbane on 7 Mate and Fox Footy).
Saturday September 22
First Preliminary Final - Hawthorn v Winner Adelaide Crows/Fremantle at the MCG, 5.15pm (series ticket match, Live into Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth on Seven and Fox Footy and Live into Sydney and Brisbane on 7 Mate and Fox Footy).
AFL General Manager Broadcasting, Scheduling and Legal Affairs Simon Lethlean said the First Preliminary Final had been programmed as a twilight game at the MCG to maximise both the match-day and television audience on the Seven Network and FOX FOOTY, as well as ensuring that the visiting team would be able to return to its home state that night, to prepare for the Grand Final, should either Adelaide / Fremantle qualify.
The AFL has been working with its partner airline Virgin and is greatly appreciative of their support to ensure that the visiting team will be able to return to either Adelaide or Perth that night, after the match.
The Second Preliminary Final was scheduled as a Friday night game at ANZ Stadium as the AFL had access to the venue for that night, around its other commitments. It was not appropriate to schedule the match at any other venue in NSW, due to the expected crowd-size for this game.
As an advisory note to all media, the AFL has worked since the 2005 season to ensure that all preliminary finalists are able to return to their home state by the Saturday night before the Grand Final. Saturday matches where teams have been able to return to their home state, or where there is no travel involved, have been played as twilight or night games. Previously, there was a requirement for a preliminary final to be played at the MCG each season, which required the Brisbane Lions to travel in 2004, despite earning the right to host a home final.
Sydney (premiers) played St Kilda at the MCG on Friday night. West Coast (runners-up) played Adelaide at Subiaco on Saturday day.
Sydney (runners-up) played Fremantle at ANZ Stadium on Friday night. West Coast (premiers) played Adelaide at AAMI Stadium on Saturday day.
Geelong Cats (premiers) played Collingwood at the MCG on Friday night. Port Adelaide (runners-up) played North Melbourne at AAMI Stadium on Saturday day.
Geelong Cats (runners-up) played Western Bulldogs at the MCG on Friday night. Hawthorn (premiers) played St Kilda on Saturday night at the MCG.
St Kilda (runners-up) played Western Bulldogs at the MCG on Friday night. Geelong Cats (premiers) played Collingwood at the MCG on Saturday night.
Drawn Grand Final. In the lead-up to the Drawn Grand Final, Collingwood (premiers) played the Geelong Cats at the MCG on Friday night. St Kilda (runners-up) played Western Bulldogs at the MCG on Saturday night.
Collingwood (runners-up) played Hawthorn at the MCG on Friday night. Geelong Cats (premiers) played West Coast at the MCG on Saturday day.