The AFL qualifiers last weekend saw the end of a season for the Sydney Swans and Essendon Bombers, leaving four teams to battle it out this weekend in the semi-finals.
Melbourne and Port Adelaide have the comfort of a week’s rest after winning their matches in the qualifiers and have secured their spots in the preliminary finals.
— AFL (@AFL) August 29, 2021
The Giants and Cats will face off on Friday night at Perth Stadium, with the winner set to play the Demons on September 10.
The Brisbane Lions will host the Western Bulldogs at the Gabba on Saturday, with the start time still to be confirmed.
The victor will take on the Power at Adelaide Oval on September 11.
Semi-final broadcast to be in Yolngu Matha language
The AFL has also announced that the semi-final match between Brisbane Lions and Western Bulldogs will be broadcast in Yolngu Matha language for the first time.
The broadcast will be conducted by Yolngu Radio for a second time, following the inaugural in-language broadcast of the 2021 Dreamtime in Perth match.
Yolngu Radio broadcasts into the six major communities and 15 homelands throughout the North-East Arnhem Land region and across Darwin and Palmerston in the Northern Territory.
Nhulunbuy local William Gumbula and Elcho Island product Baykali Ganambarr will be calling the match. They are “really excited to be travelling to the Gabba for the first time to call an AFL Final in Yolngu Matha language”.
“This is a great opportunity to inspire young Yolngu people and to celebrate our culture and language.”
“I am happy to be on the national stage and make my family proud,” Gumbula said.
Grand final news
There has been a lot of discussions around where the grand final will be held due to the current COVID-19 concerns across the east coast of Australia, but Perth has been locked in as the venue to host the 2021 grand final.
— 96FM Perth (@96FMPerth) August 31, 2021
Former Collingwood president Eddie McGuire will not be attending the grand final after being denied entry into Western Australia.
McGuire said on a radio interview that it will be the first grand final he’s missed since 1976.
“I’m very conscious of the fact that so many people can’t get into Western Australian who are West Australians or who have stories that are far more important than getting to a grand final,” he said.
“I put forward a smorgasbord of options … but it became untenable.”
Around 60,000 people are expected at the grand final. The AFL have already opened an expression of interest site for fans wanting to secure a package for Perth Stadium, with prices starting at $1,350 per person.
By Teisha Cloos