AFL delivers reality check, but questions remain

YOU would think it is the reality check some people needed.

Alex Fair.

Alex Fair.

Gillon McLachlan's visit to the state yesterday wasn't exactly one full of explosive revelations.

In fact he told us everything we already knew.

The AFL do not want a Tasmanian team in the short-term, and anyone who thought otherwise is living in some sort of fantasy land.

This is a competition which is still bedding itself down from its expansion into the Gold Coast and Greater Western Sydney.

With all the hand-outs given to these two new sides, we have a playing field that is uneven, and will become even more so when all these draft jewels handed to the Giants and the Suns start to shine.

To add another team in the short-term, and give them the same advantages would be ridiculous and detrimental to the established teams.

Eighteen teams is already too much, just look at the crowd figures and big margins of recent times, so a 19th, which would have to lead to a 20th, which, plain and simply would be stupid.

The league say it will be at least a decade before Tasmania gets a team, but marking 2024 as possible entry date would still be wishful thinking.

Relocation of a current team would be the only logical way to get a team playing a full quota of matches in this state.

The one-team model, playing eight games between Aurora Stadium and Bellerive Oval is full of merit, but the question is who fills that role?

Cross a line through Hawthorn straight away.

Save for the fixture expanding (which it won't), Hawthorn will never play more than four home and away games in this state.

That leaves North Melbourne, which has been linked to playing seven games in the state in the past.

But that link, and the potential for the Kangaroos to play, is incredibly hypocritical, considering this club said no to the Gold Coast on the basis that Melbourne is ``its home''.

North also has interest in North Ballarat, which would further complicate matters.

The Kangaroos want to up their commitment to three games next year, which would obviously give Tasmania seven games for the year, but between two teams.

Is that really that bad an outcome?

While one team playing at both ends of the state would be ideal, shouldn't we all be a little more realistic about the situation?


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