Statement: AFL season postponed and AFLW season cancelled

Statement to be attributed to AFL Players’ Association CEO Paul Marsh. 

The AFLPA understands the AFL’s decision to cancel the AFLW season and suspend the AFL season until May 31.

Players had clearly expressed their desire to play as long as it was deemed safe for them and the broader community.

With the rapidly changing situation regarding COVID-19, and the announcements of the Federal Government and various State Government’s today, player and community health and safety must remain a priority.

We are heartbroken for our AFLW players that the season ends for them this way. It is obviously incredibly disappointing for our AFLW finalists who have put their passion and commitment into season 2020.

It was discussed with AFLW player delegates from all clubs last week as to their preferred finals structure and, after consultation, the majority view was to push to a top eight, knowing that there was a risk the competition might come to an early conclusion if the COVID-19 situation continued to intensify. Unfortunately, this is now the case.

We congratulate all AFLW players on their contribution to the 2020 Season.

We remain optimistic that the 2020 AFL season will recommence at the right time, but, for now, we believe today’s decision is the right one for players, staff, clubs and the community.

We encourage the community to heed the advice of the government and to show support, care and kindness to each other as we navigate through this unprecedented situation.