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Good Friday game still a focus for North Melbourne

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AFL 2016 NAB Challenge - Hawthorn v North Melbourne
They're not praying for it but the Roos would love the regular Good Friday fixture
If the AFL decides the time's right for football on Good Friday we definitely want to be part of it
Carl Dilena, North Melbourne CEO

NORTH Melbourne remains "super keen" to be one of the teams involved if a Good Friday game gets the green light for next season.

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan said on Tuesday that the League would have "a good look" at scheduling a Good Friday match in 2017, having opted not to do so in the past two seasons despite receiving AFL Commission approval in June 2014.

North has led the campaign for Good Friday football since the late 1980s, with Carlton and the Western Bulldogs putting their hands up in recent years to be part of any game on the religious holiday.

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North chief executive Carl Dilena told the Roos' desire to help make Good Friday a key fixture on the AFL calendar had not waned.

"We're still super keen. We've been pushing it for quite some time as you know," Dilena said.

"So certainly if the AFL decides the time's right for football on Good Friday we definitely want to be part of it."

The Roos nominated Carlton as their preferred Good Friday partner in early 2014 and understands the Blues are still interested in being involved in the prospective new fixture.

However, the Blues' ability to be part of an ongoing Good Friday rivalry could be compromised by their annual season-opening Thursday night fixture against Richmond, which will occasionally fall the day before Good Friday – as it has done this year.

It is believed retaining the round one fixture against the Tigers is a greater priority for Carlton.

Dilena said North now just wanted to secure its involvement in Good Friday football and would be happy to play whatever opponent the AFL chose.

However, the Roos CEO said a Good Friday fixture would most quickly gain a foothold in the home and away season by having the same two teams play every year.

"It would be ideal if the same two teams are involved, consistent with the other blockbuster games such as Anzac Day, Queen's Birthday, Easter Monday and the Carlton-Richmond round one game," Dilena said.

"I think it adds more to it if there's a consistent pairing of teams, where you can build up to the game and everyone knows it's coming each year."

The Bulldogs are understood to remain keen on being part of any new fixture on Good Friday, while McLachlan speculated in June 2014 that a game outside Victoria was also a possibility.

"I think Sydney at 4.40pm might be a great slot up there or Gold Coast might be great," McLachlan said at the time.