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Friday 3 February 2023 Dublin: 12°C
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'Most serious threat in 100 years' - AFL postpone season and AFLW competition cancelled
The round one games today will be the last for a while in Aussie Rules.

THE 2020 AFL season has been postponed after the opening round due to the coronavirus outbreak with a warning that it is ‘the most serious threat’ to the game in 100 years.

afl-giants-cats AAP / PA Images Mark O'Connor in action for Geelong against GWS Giants in the AFL yesterday. AAP / PA Images / PA Images

It is still hoped to play the remaining 144 matches of the 2020 campaign, which was last week reduced to a season consisting of 17 games for every club. The scheduled round one games were completed today after clubs had been informed earlier of the decision

But the AFL Women’s season will not be completed after the decision was made to cancel the competition with no premiership title to be awarded.

Several Irish players are affected in both sports with the increase in recent seasons of GAA stars joining Australian Rules clubs.

Kerry’s Mark O’Connor and Laois native Zach Tuohy both played for Geelong against GWS Giants yesterday while Tipperary’s Colin O’Riordan was in action for Sydney Swans against Adelaide Crows.

afl-giants-cats AAP / PA Images Zach Tuohy in action for Geelong against GWS Giants. AAP / PA Images / PA Images

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan said the decision of Australian states to close their borders meant it was time to halt the AFL and AFLW competitions.

The AFLW season had reached the finals stage but it will now not be completed and no premiership will be awarded for this season.

“To say this is the most serious threat to our game in 100 years is an understatement. It is unprecedented in its impact,” said McLachlan.

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“It is unprecedented in the impact it is having on our game and the wider community, and as a community and as a code, we all need to take the unprecedented and required actions to get through this together.”

“I know that everyone involved in our game and our millions of supporters will be impacted by this decision and that many people will suffer significant hardship as are people right across the community but I also know that we all have a responsibility to the community and each other. And we have the will to work collectively to overcome this crisis.”

Three games took place today in the AFL with North Melbourne defeating St Kilda 56-54, Hawthorn Hawks overcoming Brisbane Lions 90-62 and West Coast Eagles beat Melbourne 78-51.

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