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Channel Seven, AFL unite to broadcast EJ Whitten Legends Game

Ben Guthrie  February 16, 2016 5:01 PM

20 years since EJ's lap Relive the emotional lap of the MCG by the great Ted Whitten

THE AFL will partner with Channel Seven to broadcast the highly popular EJ Whitten Legends Game for the next five years.

The annual match will be played at Etihad Stadium during the week's break between round 23 and the finals series.

AFL general manager of clubs and AFL operations Travis Auld said the League was pleased to confirm its commitment to the match.

"The legends game has a great history and is much loved by our fans and supporters. We are delighted to be partnering with the EJ Whitten Foundation to promote the game, and to entrench this into the weekend in the lead up to our final series," Auld said.

"The commitment of the EJ Whitten Foundation to raising the issue of men’s health and in particular, prostate cancer is a very worthy cause, and we look forward to being part of the team to make the legends game bigger and better than ever."

Net proceeds will be distributed to the EJ Whitten Foundation and the AFL’s charity partners.

The foundation honours the legacy of EJ Whitten, who died after a long and public battle with prostate cancer.

Since its inception in 1995, the EJ Whitten Foundation has raised more than $8.5m for prostate cancer research and awareness.

The future of the match was put in doubt when it was reported late in 2015 that the foundation and its management company ended their partnership after a dispute about the game's finances.

The cancer charity had been receiving about $100,000 from money raised at the mid-year match, but had been banking on a more lucrative deal.

Channel Nine had been the official broadcaster of the match for the past 20 years.

The 2014 event was the fourth most-watched game of Australian rules football on television that year, and the match regularly draws a Melbourne audience approaching half a million people. 

Ticket prices are expected to be set at $20 for adults, $15 for concession, $5 for children and $40 for a family ticket.