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A GRAND Final place will be on the line when the Sydney Swans and North Melbourne start preliminary final weekend next Friday night at ANZ Stadium.

The AFL confirmed the Swans and Kangaroos first preliminary final will take place at the ground, with the first bounce set for 7.50pm AEDT.

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The Swans will be primed for a return to the Grand Final after a week off following their hard-fought qualifying final win over Fremantle.

But the Kangaroos will carry plenty of confidence into the meeting, and not just because of their two exciting finals victories. When the Roos and Swans met in round four at the SCG, North Melbourne won by 43 points.

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The second preliminary final, between Hawthorn and Port Adelaide, will be played at the MCG in twilight timeslot starting at 4.45pm AEDT.

The start time will ensure the Power are able to travel back to Adelaide on Saturday evening following the game after the AFL worked closely with partner airline Virgin to confirm flight availability.

Hawthorn will enter the game favourites after its week off and strong qualifying final win over Geelong.

But Port Adelaide has regained its early-season form and, like the Kangaroos, have strong self-belief after brilliant elimination and semi-final wins.

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AFL chief executive officer Gillon McLachlan said the League had determined that Saturday’s match at the MCG would start at 4.45pm after examining all possible homeward flight options for Port Adelaide.

He said the preliminary final was scheduled as a late-afternoon twilight game to maximise both the number of people who could attend the game in person, as well as watch the match on television in SA and around the rest of the country, while also ensuring that Port could return to its home state on Saturday night.

"We are greatly appreciative of the work of our partner airline, Virgin, to explore all available options for flights back to Adelaide and ensuring the best outcome for Port Adelaide as the team travelling home from Melbourne next week," he said.

-Friday, September 19: Sydney Swans vs North Melbourne, first preliminary final
ANZ Stadium, 7.50pm

-Saturday, September 20: Hawthorn vs Port Adelaide, second preliminary final
MCG, 4.45pm