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Adelaide to host 2015 NAB AFL Draft

Backing Bolts, Nic Nat to miss, draft moves Matt Thompson and Nat Edwards with Footy Feed

AFTER months of negotiations, Adelaide has been confirmed as the home of this year's NAB AFL Draft.

As reported by AFL.com.au in July, the AFL has leant the way of South Australia for this year's event after staging the draft on the Gold Coast the past three years.

The League announced it would hold the draft on Tuesday, November 24, which will be the first time in nearly 20 years the city has hosted the annual meeting of clubs.

It will start at 5.30pm ACDT time at the Adelaide Convention Centre.

It is interesting timing for the event, given the draft will be wedged between the AFL's International Rules Series Test in Dublin on Saturday, November 21, and the first day/night Test cricket match starting at Adelaide on Friday, November 27. 

It is understood the short gap between the draft and the start of the cricket saw Adelaide Oval ruled out as the venue for the draft.  

AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan said it was great to take the draft back to Adelaide after its stint in Queensland.

"The nature of the event allows us to review the location every few years and it is exciting that another city, and another market of fans, will be able to witness the NAB AFL Draft live," McLachlan said.  

"The AFL industry looks forward to descending on the great city of Adelaide in November when we welcome the next wave of talented footballers into the 18 clubs."

The AFL dragged out its decision to settle on a location and date for this year's draft, having considered a number of options around the country.

The Queensland Government's events department put forward a three-year offer to extend its stint as the home of the draft, but the AFL also looked at taking it back to Melbourne and was linked to exploring Sydney as a venue too.

They received a lucrative offer from the mining town of Karratha to hold the draft in the remote Western Australia region, but there was not enough facilities or accommodation to take the industry there.

The League hopes having the draft in Adelaide will attract more football fans to the event, having struggled to bring in sizeable crowds to the Gold Coast Convention Centre.

AFL officials have also monitored the success of the NBA and NFL in America in creating more excitement around their respective drafts, with a view for more prospects to attend this year's meeting.

South Australian Aaron Francis is tipped to be the first player from the state picked this year after a dynamic season across half-back, while injured forward Ryan Burton and half-back Riley Bonner are also possible first-round picks from the state's under-18 team.

Adelaide has not held the draft since it was staged at Football Park in 1997 when Port Adelaide drafted stars Chad Cornes and Nick Stevens.

The introduction of live bidding on father-son and academy prospects is also likely to add a new element to the draft this year.