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Fixture revealed: Traditional rivals to kick off AFL Women's

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THE AFL is banking on the brand power and history of two of its original clubs to kick-start next year's NAB AFL Women's competition, slating a Collingwood-Carlton clash to open business.

The full AFLW fixture: Every club, every game

Fierce rivals since their first meeting – in 1897, in an eight-club competition known as the Victorian Football League – the clubs' respective women's teams will feature in a night game at Olympic Park Oval, opposite the MCG, on Friday, February 3.

Who's playing where? Your club-by-club AFLW fixture guide

The first round of AFL Women's action will be completed on the February 4-5 weekend, with Adelaide taking on Greater Western Sydney at Thebarton Oval in Adelaide's inner-west, the Western Bulldogs hosting Fremantle at Whitten Oval in Melbourne's west, and Melbourne squaring off against the Brisbane Lions at Casey Fields in Melbourne's outer south-east.

The eight AFL Women's clubs will compete in seven rounds (four matches per weekend, with the eight clubs playing each once). The competition's inaugural Grand Final is set for Saturday, March 25, as part of the opening round of the AFL season. A venue for that match is yet to be finalised.

Collingwood's Nicola Stevens said the Magpies had completed an induction with club CEO Gary Pert on what it means to be a Collingwood player and the rivalry with the Blues was already forming. 

"We know the history between Collingwood and Carlton, and we've got girls that we've played against our whole lives or played with," Stevens said.

"We had our induction at Collingwood and were taught about the rivalry between clubs and what it's like to be Collingwood.

"It's awesome, I love it, and it's all part of it, so we're looking forward to building on that as we start the season."

The season opener will be played on the Magpies' home turf next to the Holden Centre, but Carlton's Madeline Keryk called on Blues supporters to come in numbers.

"I'm really looking forward to building on that old rivalry between Collingwood and Carlton and really honoured that we get to play the first game of this new competition," Keryk said. 

"We want to see a field of Blue even though it's a Collingwood home game."

Six of the 28 home and away AFL Women's matches will be part of double-headers, with the games to be played either before or after JLT Community Series games.

The first of the double-headers will feature the Bulldogs and the Demons, who will meet in a night games at Whitten Oval on Saturday, February 18, following a twilight JLT Community Series match between the clubs' AFL sides.

The Dogs and Dees played an entertaining AFL women's exhibition series match at the venue on September 3 during the AFL's Celebration of Football week, drawing a strong crowd and impressive television ratings. 

AFL game development executive Simon Lethlean said the venue for the Grand Final was likely to come from the community grounds already in use, but the MCG and Etihad Stadium would be free.

"We'll do what's right for the feel of the match, but also for the players and what's best for the game," Lethlean said.

"I think our initial thoughts are that one of the venues we're already using will be better suited than the MCG or Etihad at this stage."

As reported on Thursday, all 28 home and away games are to be broadcast live on Foxtel, the official AFL app and AFL.com.au. Select games will also be broadcast on Seven, with the free-to-air broadcaster winning rights to show the Grand Final live. Fox is expected to air the Grand Final on delay.