The GWS Giants have seemingly missed out on luring a big Victorian club to Canberra for Anzac Day, but there could be some consolation with AFL powerhouse Geelong pencilled on their draft 2015 fixture at Manuka Oval.
Gold Coast are shaping as the Giants’ likely opponents for the historical 2015 Anzac Day game, which will be played as a twilight fixture after the Essendon-Collingwood blockbuster at the MCG.
GWS are also likely to play their first two home games at Manuka, possibly in round two and certainly in round four, given their Sydney base will be out of action because of the Sydney Royal Easter Show.
The Giants and the ACT government had been lobbying the AFL for a big Victorian club on Anzac Day, which will commemorate the 100th anniversary of Gallipoli, with Geelong and back-to-back premiers Hawthorn their preferred opponents.
While that bid seems to have failed, it’s likely Geelong will play its first game in the ACT since it beat North Melbourne at Manuka in 2006.
The Giants’ NAB Cup match for Canberra is likely to be released on Tuesday, with the AFL draw announced on Thursday.
GWS chief executive David Matthews said the draft draw was subject to change.
“Things can change late, so it’s tough to speculate on exactly who is going to be placed where yet, but we do know we’re aiming to get a stronger fixture next year into Canberra,” Matthews said on the ABC.
“We have requested two Victorian sides in particular, and whether it’s a side like Gold Coast coming for one of those three games, that’d be a good result with Gary Ablett jnr and given the emerging rivalry we’ve got … we had our first ever win in Canberra against Gold Coast.”
The Giants have played the Western Bulldogs at Manuka every season since joining the AFL three years ago and generally have been allocated low-drawing clubs like Melbourne, Port Adelaide and North Melbourne. But Matthews said they were making an effort to get the bigger clubs to Canberra.
“We do want to bring a mix of sides to Canberra,” he said.
“Over time we want to be performing at a level and winning games regularly enough that the entertainment is first and foremost the Giants, but we’re conscious there’s supporters of all clubs in Canberra, so the Giants play a role in trying to vary the fixture and bring different sides in.
“We know we’re very likely to be there in round two and we know we’re going to be back for sure in round four, which is the Anzac clash … that’s going to give us a great start and great momentum in the nation’s capital.”
GWS plays three home-and-away games in Canberra every season, plus one pre-season game.
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.