Will Hodgman

Premier of Tasmania

16 February 2017

Sarah Courtney, Liberal Member for Bass

Nic Street, Liberal Member for Franklin

AFL’s lazy excuses

Comments by departing AFL Chairman Mike Fitzpatrick that Tasmania’s north-south rivalry is why we don’t have our own team in the AFL are nothing more than a lazy excuse by an organisation who has failed to deliver for our state.

Liberal Member for Franklin, Nic Street said:

“The simple fact is, it is not Tasmania’s fault we don’t have an AFL team of our own, it is the AFL’s.

“The rivalries in Adelaide, Sydney and Western Australia weren’t a hindrance to those states joining the AFL – in fact, each now has two teams in the AFL!

“As for the silly excuse that they wouldn’t know what ground to play at – seriously! Virtually every AFL team plays regularly at more than one ground.”

Liberal Member for Bass, Sarah Courtney, said:

“While we love our Hawks and their ongoing contribution to Tasmania, the AFL will never be a truly national competition until we have our own side.

“It is telling that other sporting codes – including most recently soccer, and the Big Bash Cricket League – appear to have a firmer grasp of this than the AFL.

“I sincerely hope that the new Chairman has a better grasp of the importance of Tasmania to the AFL than Mr Fitzpatrick, and finally acts to address it.”

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