AFLW 2022: Springfield Grand Ultimate venue sparks debate, Brisbane Lions vs Melbourne Demons

The AFLW has been criticised for the choice to carry this weekend’s AFLW Grand Ultimate at a small-capacity venue that has by no means hosted a sport earlier than.

Brisbane and Melbourne will go head-to-head within the season decider on Sunday to determine the winners of the seventh version of AFLW.

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The Lions completed on high of the ladder forward of the Demons by simply 0.3 factors distinction proportion and get the benefit of internet hosting the grand closing.

However the AFLW have needed to resort to a back-up plan as a result of the first-choice of stadiums in Brisbane are unavailable this weekend.

The Gabba is below cricket authority with each a Sheffield Defend sport and Australian Check match in coming weeks, whereas Metricon Stadium is internet hosting a music competition that includes pop star Calvin Harris.

It means the AFLW Grand Ultimate will likely be held at Brisbane’s new Springfield facility known as Brighton Houses Enviornment, which has 600 seats and a capability of round 8000.

Such has been the last-minute nature of the grand closing plans, the grass at Springfield has solely simply been laid down within the final couple of weeks.

It is going to be the thirty eighth venue the AFLW may have used for a 10-week dwelling and away season.

The AFLW’s determination to prioritise giving the highest-finishing staff internet hosting rights, as a substitute of holding the grand closing at a impartial venue to maximise attendance, has raised eyebrows.

“It’s by no means hosted a sport – it’s solely had its turf laid down for heaven’s sake,” SEN’s Sam Edmund stated of the Springfield facility.

“It could be internet hosting an AFLW grand closing that historical past has proven can entice greater than 50,000 individuals.”

Fox Footy’s David King stated the AFLW set a precedent by permitting Richmond to host its dwelling qualifying closing on the Tigers’ religious dwelling of Punt Highway, which held just some thousand followers.

“Richmond have set the course right here – it’s not in regards to the quantity of individuals you may get to the venue,” King stated on SEN.

3AW radio host Tom Elliott was gobsmacked by the choice to carry the Grand Ultimate at Springfield.

“They’re speaking a few soccer floor known as Springfield which is nothing greater than a glorified coaching pitch,” Elliott stated.

“I discover this totally astonishing.

“The AFL retains saying that it takes girls’s soccer significantly – play the grand closing at Marvel Stadium!

“If 50,000 individuals wish to rock up and watch the 2 finest girls’s staff go head-to-head in opposition to one another … play it at Marvel Stadium right here in Melbourne as a result of Marvel Stadium is owned by the AFL and be accomplished with it.

“Don’t give dwelling floor benefit. Simply don’t have a girls’s grand closing at what quantities to a coaching monitor.”

Retired AFLW participant Meg Hutchins tweeted: “I’m all for the very best ranked staff internet hosting the Grand Ultimate. I like that about AFLW.

“Nonetheless, the venue MUST be acceptable for the second it’s internet hosting. 10K+ min capability. Gabba & Carrara (sadly unavail) Springfield – superior venue – simply not acceptable for a Grand Ultimate.”

The AFLW and Brisbane have defended the selection of venue, mentioning the ladies’s competitors’s coverage is totally different to the AFL, which holds the lads’s grand closing on the MCG yearly.

“That is the largest venue obtainable in Brisbane to host the AFL Grand Ultimate,” AFLW common supervisor Nicole Livingstone instructed ABC Radio.

“The fantastic thing about AFLW is there’s curiosity and we glance in future years to contemplate whether or not or not there’s a possibility to award a grand closing to 1 explicit place.

“However a part of the nuancing of AFLW and a part of what of we love about AFLW is that it’s totally different and distinctive to the lads’s sport and the Lions have been afforded the suitable to host the grand closing and that is the venue that we’ll play that.”

Brisbane CEO Greg Swann stated: “It’s really a purpose-built AFLW floor. It’s a stadium, it’s received grandstands, we’ve received open air right here due to the climate.

“It’s our dwelling for an extended, very long time and hopefully we’re taking part in loads of Grand Finals right here over the following few years.”

“Brighton Houses Enviornment is an AFL accredited stadium, with full broadcast compliance, wonderful public transport and parking, expansive dwelling and away staff, and officers amenities. It’s the very best of its class for ladies’s sport within the nation and can go a great distance in serving to the expansion of ladies and woman’s footy in Queensland.

“It’s been designed as a uniquely Queensland venue – making the most of spectators having the ability to sit on the hill with their household and mates, and have a festive really feel with meals vans and leisure.

“I can’t consider a greater method to present it off to the world.”

Initially revealed as ‘Glorified coaching floor’: Shock AFLW Grand Ultimate venue sparks heated debate