AFL announce byes for 2011 draw - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

AFL announce byes for 2011 draw

07/09/2010 07:40:52 PM Comments (0)

Next year's AFL fixture will have 19 rounds of eight games and five rounds of seven games to accommodate the introduction of 17th team the Gold Coast Suns.

The AFL said on Tuesday that in 2011 all 17 clubs must have two byes to enable a 22-game season to be completed across 24 weekends of football.

The awkward fixturing of a 17-team competition will only be an issue for one year, with Team GWS joining the AFL in 2012.

The AFL considered other options, including the idea of playing 23 rounds of eight games and one round of three games, chief operating officer Gillon McLachlan told

"The fixture we will use provides the best spread of byes across the competition for the season," McLachlan said.

"This mix will enable the byes for all teams to be spaced as best we can through the season."

He says it's likely three of the rounds in which only seven games are played will take place early in the season.

This will allow several feature matches to be scheduled around the Easter and Anzac Day period.

Next year's fixture will be released in late October, although the AFL has already announced Gold Coast will have a bye in round one and play their first home-and-away game against Richmond at the Gabba in round two.

The addition of the Suns provides 11 extra games across the season - 187 games in total - plus finals.

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