AFL BOSS Gillon McLachlan is refusing to rule out the possibility of a full-house MCG on Grand Final day this year.
While conceding crowds were unlikely for the first four weeks of the 2020 season resumption, McLachlan told AFL.com.au that it was an "ambition" of his to pack the MCG on October 24, the date tentatively set for the 2020 Grand Final.
"Clearly we will be guided by the governments and health officials but every day that goes past we get a bit more confident, we and we have detailed plans, venue by venue, as to how we bring crowds back, under different scenarios," McLachlan said.
"I feel a sense of commitment to our members, our supporters and fans to do that, if it is safe. So we will be ready and I am more optimistic than I was and there is certainly a chance in some form, yeah.
"But probably post the four weeks (of fixturing, for rounds two to five). We will talk to governments and others. I still haven’t ruled out - I love the thought of a full Grand Final.
"You’ve got to be ready. And you’ve got to dream and you’ve got to do it in a way that works out with where our governments are in our communities."
Asked to clarify his "full Grand Final" comment, McLachlan said:
"It is an ambition, put it there."
In his first major interview since the COVID-19 enforced competition suspension in March, McLachlan also:
- CONFIRMED the scheduling of the NAB AFL Draft, post 2020 season;
- SAID details of savage cuts to each club's "soft cap" expenditure would soon be confirmed;
- HINTED the 2020 Grand Final, if held as desired on October 24 (which is also Cox Plate day) would be played outside its normal 2.30pm timeslot because a "commitment we have made is we will work in with other sports";
- COULDN'T commit to allowing WA teams West Coast and Fremantle return to Perth after round five.