FORGOTTEN what's changed about footy in 2020?
Here's eight things you need to know about the season restart …
How many games are left in the season?
The AFL made the call in March to bring the season back to 17 matches per club. With one round completed, each club has 16 games left. A traditional finals series will take place with eight teams competing three weeks, plus a Grand Final (with no GF date locked in yet). It is likely there will be no pre-finals bye like there has been in recent seasons.
How long will the quarters run?
Just like round one, each quarter will be 16 minutes plus time-on. This is a reduction on last year's 20 minutes plus time-on. The new rule will be in place for the remainder of 2020 plus finals, but is expected to revert back to normal in 2021.
How many players will be on the bench?
While the AFL toyed with the idea of having extra players on the bench, each team will be allowed the normal four interchange players and 90 rotations per game.
Who can attend matches?
The South Australian government has given clearance for 2240 people to attend Saturday night's Showdown between Adelaide and Port Adelaide. It will be split between club members, corporates and Adelaide Oval members. Greater Western Sydney and Sydney have been granted 350 people for respective matches against North Melbourne and Essendon on Sunday. Fans in Victoria and Queensland will need to wait. Media are allowed to sit in assigned media areas but no media members - except one broadcast boundary rider and camera staff - are allowed on the ground.
How many club staff members are allowed at games?
Each club is allowed 30 staff members to attend matches and be in the inner-sanctum with players. There will be a maximum of eight people allowed in the coach's box and 12 on the interchange bench, in addition to players. The remaining staff will be in the changerooms. Club board members have been given an invitation to attend matches and sit in corporate boxes.
What happens to the players not playing?
AFL-listed players have been told they can't play at state league level in 2020 to avoid coming into contact with COVID-19 from someone outside the AFL bubble. Instead, clubs will be able to schedule scratch matches against one another for those overlooked for AFL selection. It will be up to competing clubs to organise matches and they will vary in length and the number of players used – often with less than 18 players per side. There are six scratch matches scheduled for this weekend.
When will the next block of matches be released?
Last month the AFL released the fixture for rounds 2-5. After round three, the AFL is expected to announce the matches scheduled for rounds 6-7. It is expected a Thursday-Sunday round structure will remain.
ROUNDS 2-5 Check out the full fixture
How long will the WA and SA clubs be in the hubs?
As it sits, Fremantle and West Coast will spend four weeks inside the Gold Coast quarantine hub for rounds 2-5 before a decision is made ahead of the next fixture release. After Saturday night's Showdown between Adelaide and Port Adelaide, both clubs will head to the Gold Coast for at least three matches in rounds 3-5.