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Swans chief now turns on Geelong

Back on the attack: Sydney Swans chairman Richard Colless.

Back on the attack: Sydney Swans chairman Richard Colless. Photo: Steve Christo

The simmering feud between the Sydney and Melbourne AFL clubs has shown no signs of abating, with Swans chairman Richard Colless back in attack mode over a call for an AFL investigation into his club's total player payments.

And Colless has disputed the version of events put forward by Carlton president Stephen Kernahan, stating that Colless had apologised following his stinging attack on the Blues.

With the AFL presidents' meeting on March 20 looming as a potentially politically divisive affair, Colless - the longest-serving club chairman in the AFL - said he remained ''bitterly disappointed'' at the lack of ''esprit de corps'' among club chiefs.

Turning his attention to former AFL commissioner and now Geelong president Colin Carter, Colless said: ''Never in the history of the game has a premiership club retained so many great players as Geelong.

''I'd love Colin to tell me how it's done. Probably the best person to ask about how you keep a squad together is Colin Carter. To use terms like 'looking at the books' implies something sinister and coming from a man of Colin's standing … well it's more than mischievous.

''And, as for Stephen Kernahan, who I dearly admire and have always got on well with, he is only telling half the story. My apology came as a result of his abject apology to me. He was very disappointed in Greg Swann's comments about our club, had made that clear to Greg and told me he regretted them. In that spirit, I was happy to apologise as well.''

Greater Western Sydney chairman Tony Shepherd, who also reportedly apologised for his subtle swipe at Carlton's history with salary cap issues, was also a little perplexed at Kernahan's version of their conversation.

With AFL boss Andrew Demetriou acutely aware of the bad blood flowing between various club blocs as the equalisation debate continues to divide them, Colless said the public swipes directed at Sydney, linking the Kurt Tippett recruitment with the club's 9.8 per cent cost-of-living allowance, had him lamenting the current culture among clubs.

''We will abide by the umpire's decision where the allowance is concerned,'' Colless said. ''We welcome the review but it's just so disappointing - staggering - that no one has bothered to pick up the phone and talk to their counterparts.

''Never in the history of the game have I seen a time where people have been so public in questioning other clubs' affairs. I could point out to them that our club in recent years has lost Michael O'Loughlin and Barry Hall and Darren Jolly and we have been very strategic in the players we have recruited.''

Sydney chief executive Andrew Ireland has remained adamant that every player on Sydney's list receives the additional 9.8 per cent and that all the club's player contracts were closely audited by the AFL.

Carter said on Tuesday: ''The Kurt Tippett thing bothers me. If they had $800,000 there for Kurt Tippett because they managed their salary cap well and had one, two or three highly paid players leave, then that is good management. But if they had $800,000 there because they have not been paying their other players that allowance, then that is wrong.

''I think [Colless] is wrong to say clubs are not entitled to ask the question or for the books to be looked at by the AFL.''

47 comments

  • Carter is right to pose these questions of Sydney - in that the cost of living allowance needs to be spread across the whole list and not used to lure one marquee player. Geelong has already lost arguably its best player, in part because of salary cap issues and the list has been kept together on goodwill and unity of the playing group. Colless' mindless defensiveness about how Sydney can afford Tippett only heightens suspicions - especially when there is a "cost of living" allowance involved. His club's integrity has only been tarnished by its pursuit of Tippett in the first place.

    Commenter
    Paul
    Date and time
    March 06, 2013, 8:22AM
    • Assume you mean Gary Ablett. He didn't leave because of salary cap issues, he left to feather his own salary nest!

      Commenter
      Catherine
      Date and time
      March 06, 2013, 8:50AM
    • "Colless' mindless defensiveness.."
      Mindless? It's simple arithmetic, Sydney will either be within the salary cap or above it. They either have room for Tippet or they don't. And after last year, I'm sure the AFL know exactly where Sydney stand.

      "...club's integrity has only been tarnished by its pursuit of Tippett in the first place."
      But why? Brisbane Lions and any other clubs looking at Tippet, were they risking being ''tarnished'?

      Now, whether or not Sydney deserve the current level of COL allowance is another argument.

      Commenter
      Decca
      Location
      MEL
      Date and time
      March 06, 2013, 9:42AM
    • Paul the Cost of Living allowance is spread over the whole list and is audited by the AFL each year to make sure it is. You guys in Melbourne have a persecution complex every time an interstate club wins a premiership or is able to pick up a marquee player. you go ballistic! We have the money to pick up Tippett because we have managed our list very well and we have one of the youngest lists in the AFL due to retirements or the moving on of other Marquee or top players i recent years.

      Commenter
      A. Pincombe
      Location
      Lilyfield
      Date and time
      March 06, 2013, 10:32AM
    • Guys it's a moot point.....the allowance will stay and as everyone states as long as it's spread amongst the 42 players.

      As for Geelong being able to keep their 'list together' Mr Colless.

      Here is the list to date we have lost due to not being able to accommodate all . Shane Mumford 3 year deal to Swans we couldn't match -Scott Thompson ( kangaroos), Brent Maloney, Jeremy Laidler, Andrew Carazzo, Gary Ablett ( doubled his offer - feather his nest who wouldn't?) Brent Prismall, Charlie Gardiner, Nathan Djkerra, Henry Playfair, Tim Callan, Steven King... most left for opportunity and financial gain!

      So Mr Colless any of these guys get a game in your squad - few decent players 'lost' due to salary cap pressures.

      Every successful Club will lose players south of the Border - we are seeing it each year. Hawthorn and Collingwood will be next.

      Equalization? Footscray are after Socialism spread the money around. One thing is for sure the Cap will be tested and shortly!

      Commenter
      CraiggyBoy
      Date and time
      March 06, 2013, 11:03AM
    • @A. Pincombe,

      the point is that the salary restrictions that come with a Premiership generally keep a club from picking up "marquee players".

      When Geelong won in 2007, its key champion players (including Ablett) all agreed to take a significant cut in salary to enable them to stay together. If they hadn't done so, Geelong would have lost more than one of those players to other clubs. They certainly were not in a position to splash the sort of money that Sydney used to lure Tippett.

      The AFL has made a tradition of financially penalising premiership winning clubs through the salary cap, but in this instance it appears that the opposite has happened. That is why questions are being asked.

      Commenter
      blu
      Location
      Geelong
      Date and time
      March 06, 2013, 11:10AM
    • A. Pincombe, if the COL allowance was audited each year by the AFL, then the response to the comments would be, "Our books are already reviewed by the AFL for compliance with the COL allowance." However a defensive response was given and then an attack on Geelong that it is amazing how they kept their team together through their premiership years. Which is interesting, as I count about 4 players they lost. From Gary Ablett, the best player in the league, to lower level players like Brent Prismall.

      But Colless doesn't seem to let the truth get in the way of his stories. Just like how it is 9.8% added after contracts are agreed, a ridiculous claim not backed up by the realities of contract negotiation.

      Commenter
      Nick
      Location
      Perth
      Date and time
      March 06, 2013, 11:39AM
    • The AFL also removed any benefit in salary cap space from Adelaide and Brisbane through their successful periods. Sydney has won 2 premierships since 2005 and has made finals consistently yet havent been ear marked as successful.
      I can appreciate higher cost of living as an argument for a slightly higher cap however they've shot themselves in the foot by signing a player on a huge contract who can only play for half the year. Doesn't seem fair at all. They are just laughing at everyone as they continue to argue higher cost of living yet sign players for $800K a year they clearly dont need.

      Commenter
      PeeRod
      Date and time
      March 06, 2013, 11:57AM
    • Of course Gazza left because of salary cap issues. He got more money to play at the Suns and good luck to him. If he did not go, Geelong would have have lost another high profile player to either the Suns or GWS. Who would have that been Bartel, Selwood, Hawkins, Taylor, Steve Johnson ??? Either one would have been just a big a loss as Gazza. With Gazza gone more money was available to pay the others a bit more.

      Commenter
      The WA Cat
      Location
      Albany
      Date and time
      March 06, 2013, 12:13PM
    • Gee Craigyboy!

      Most of the players you mention left because they were delisted or seen as second string. They were not considered good enough for your fine team. By the way Prismall went with the coach. Why don't we list those that stayed: Kelly, Bartel, Byrnes, Chapman, Hawkins, Johnson, Menzel (retired), Milburn (retired), Motlop, Ottens (retired), Pods, Rooke (until retirement), Scarlett (retired), Selwood, Stokes, Taylor, Vardy, Wojcinski, Varcoe, Enright, Harley (retired), Mooney, Ling, Corey. I probably have left out a few but all these players made up the basis of your premiership teams. Add Ablett and it puzzles me how you had the cap to keep all these players?

      Commenter
      A. Pincombe
      Location
      Lilyfield
      Date and time
      March 06, 2013, 3:49PM

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2014 Home and Away

Round 1
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COL 46 vs FRE 116 Report Stats
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GWS 99 vs SYD 67 Report Report Stats
GCF 87 vs RIC 69 Report Stats
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CAR 87 vs PTA 120 Report Stats
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GEE 119 vs ADE 81 Report Stats
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NTH 60 vs ESS 99 Report Stats
Sat, 22 MarTimes shown AEDT
HAW 139 vs BRI 91 Report Stats
STK 68 vs MEL 51 Report Stats
Sun, 23 MarTimes shown AEDT
WCE 134 vs WBU 69 Report Stats
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Round 2
Thu, 27 MarTimes shown AEDT
RIC 98 vs CAR 86 Report Stats
Fri, 28 MarTimes shown AEDT
ESS 86 vs HAW 90 Report Stats
Sat, 29 MarTimes shown AEDT
STK 95 vs GWS 88 Stats
PTA 127 vs ADE 73 Report Stats
FRE 87 vs GCF 39 Report Stats
SYD 69 vs COL 89 Report Stats
Sun, 30 MarTimes shown AEDT
BRI 68 vs GEE 93 Stats
MEL 30 vs WCE 123 Report Stats
WBU 54 vs NTH 83 Report Stats
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Round 3
Fri, 04 AprTimes shown AEDT
HAW 137 vs FRE 79 Report Stats
Sat, 05 AprTimes shown AEDT
WBU 100 vs RIC 98 Report Stats
ADE 71 vs SYD 134 Report Stats
GCF 114 vs BRI 61 Stats
WCE 83 vs STK 58 Report Stats
COL 76 vs GEE 87 Report Stats
Sun, 06 AprTimes shown AEST
GWS 79 vs MEL 47 Report Stats
NTH 97 vs PTA 90 Report Stats
ESS 138 vs CAR 57 Report Stats
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Round 4
Fri, 11 AprTimes shown AEST
RIC 72 vs COL 110 Report Stats
Sat, 12 AprTimes shown AEST
CAR 58 vs MEL 81 Report Stats
PTA 159 vs BRI 46 Report Stats
GWS 83 vs WBU 110 Report Stats
GEE 107 vs WCE 32 Report Stats
GCF 49 vs HAW 148 Report Stats
Sun, 13 AprTimes shown AEST
SYD 48 vs NTH 91 Report Stats
STK 50 vs ADE 136 Report Stats
FRE 113 vs ESS 60 Report Stats
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Round 5
Thu, 17 AprTimes shown AEST
BRI 63 vs RIC 106 Report Stats
Sat, 19 AprTimes shown AEST
COL 93 vs NTH 58 Report Stats
SYD 92 vs FRE 75 Report Stats
WCE 56 vs PTA 70 Report Stats
ESS 65 vs STK 81 Report Stats
Sun, 20 AprTimes shown AEST
ADE 137 vs GWS 72 Report Stats
MEL 78 vs GCF 86 Report Stats
WBU 91 vs CAR 119 Report Stats
Mon, 21 AprTimes shown AEST
GEE 106 vs HAW 87 Report Stats
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Round 6
Fri, 25 AprTimes shown AEST
COL 83 vs ESS 60 Report Stats
STK 79 vs BRI 82 Report Stats
FRE 61 vs NTH 74 Report Stats
Sat, 26 AprTimes shown AEST
GCF 134 vs GWS 94 Report Stats
CAR 92 vs WCE 89 Report Stats
MEL 38 vs SYD 69 Report Stats
Sun, 27 AprTimes shown AEST
WBU 83 vs ADE 92 Report Stats
RIC 52 vs HAW 118 Report Stats
PTA 107 vs GEE 67 Report Stats
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Round 7
Fri, 02 MayTimes shown AEST
CAR 70 vs COL 104 Report Stats
Sat, 03 MayTimes shown AEST
HAW 175 vs STK 30 Report Stats
GWS 97 vs PTA 132 Report Stats
ADE 67 vs MEL 70 Report Stats
BRI 44 vs SYD 123 Stats
ESS 73 vs WBU 65 Report Stats
Sun, 04 MayTimes shown AEST
NTH 77 vs GCF 120 Report Stats
GEE 81 vs RIC 76 Report Stats
WCE 54 vs FRE 73 Report Stats
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Round 8
Fri, 09 MayTimes shown AEST
SYD 107 vs HAW 88 Report Stats
Sat, 10 MayTimes shown AEST
PTA 94 vs FRE 76 Report Stats
BRI 57 vs ESS 65 Report Stats
MEL 83 vs WBU 99 Report Stats
Sun, 11 MayTimes shown AEST
WCE 188 vs GWS 77 Report Stats
Mon, 12 MayTimes shown AEST
STK 69 vs CAR 101 Report Stats
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Round 9
Thu, 15 MayTimes shown AEST
ADE 76 vs COL 55 Report Stats
Fri, 16 MayTimes shown AEST
ESS 64 vs SYD 114 Report Stats
Sat, 17 MayTimes shown AEST
RIC 74 vs MEL 91 Report Stats
NTH 125 vs BRI 38 Report Stats
FRE 96 vs GEE 64 Report Stats
Sun, 18 MayTimes shown AEST
STK 87 vs GCF 125 Report Stats
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Round 10
Fri, 23 MayTimes shown AEST
GEE 111 vs NTH 91 Report Stats
Sat, 24 MayTimes shown AEST
GWS 41 vs RIC 154 Report Stats
COL 109 vs WCE 101 Report Stats
PTA 100 vs HAW 86 Report Stats
Sun, 25 MayTimes shown AEST
GCF 119 vs WBU 74 Report Stats
CAR 81 vs ADE 76 Report Stats
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Round 11
Thu, 29 MayTimes shown AEST
SYD 148 vs GEE 38 Report Stats
Fri, 30 MayTimes shown AEST
STK 54 vs COL 140 Report Stats
Sat, 31 MayTimes shown AEST
MEL 75 vs PTA 95 Report Stats
BRI 98 vs CAR 91 Report Stats
ESS 104 vs RIC 54 Report Stats
Sun, 01 JunTimes shown AEST
ADE 109 vs GCF 77 Report Stats
WBU 51 vs FRE 89 Report Stats
HAW 94 vs GWS 87 Report Stats
WCE 44 vs NTH 82 Report Stats
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Round 12
Fri, 06 JunTimes shown AEST
GEE 107 vs CAR 102 Report Stats
Sat, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
HAW 123 vs WCE 79 Report Stats
PTA 129 vs STK 59 Report Stats
WBU 87 vs BRI 95 Report Stats
GWS 66 vs ESS 81 Report Stats
Sun, 08 JunTimes shown AEST
GCF 74 vs SYD 109 Report Stats
FRE 90 vs ADE 50 Report Stats
NTH 116 vs RIC 88 Report Stats
Mon, 09 JunTimes shown AEST
MEL 28 vs COL 61 Report Stats
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Round 13
Fri, 13 JunTimes shown AEST
CAR 90 vs HAW 118 Report Stats
Sat, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
RIC 85 vs FRE 105 Report Stats
SYD 98 vs PTA 94 Report Stats
WCE 103 vs GCF 100 Report Stats
BRI 80 vs GWS 125 Report Stats
ADE 109 vs NTH 73 Report Stats
Sun, 15 JunTimes shown AEST
GEE 133 vs STK 37 Report Stats
COL 98 vs WBU 106 Report Stats
ESS 77 vs MEL 78 Report Stats
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Round 14
Fri, 20 JunTimes shown AEST
RIC 51 vs SYD 62 Report Stats
Sat, 21 JunTimes shown AEST
PTA 128 vs WBU 56 Report Stats
HAW 115 vs COL 86 Report Stats
GCF 118 vs GEE 78 Report Stats
FRE 105 vs BRI 22 Report Stats
ESS 101 vs ADE 92 Report Stats
Sun, 22 JunTimes shown AEST
GWS 100 vs CAR 92 Report Stats
STK 70 vs WCE 103 Report Stats
MEL 66 vs NTH 107 Report Stats
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Round 15
Fri, 27 JunTimes shown AEST
GEE 89 vs ESS 80 Report Stats
Sat, 28 JunTimes shown AEST
HAW 116 vs GCF 63 Report Stats
STK 73 vs RIC 117 Report Stats
FRE 88 vs WCE 81 Report Stats
SYD 106 vs GWS 60 Stats
BRI 70 vs NTH 66 Report Stats
Sun, 29 JunTimes shown AEST
WBU 91 vs MEL 85 Report Stats
ADE 99 vs PTA 76 Report Stats
COL 91 vs CAR 76 Report Stats
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Round 16
Fri, 04 JulTimes shown AEST
NTH 108 vs HAW 88 Report Stats
Sat, 05 JulTimes shown AEST
RIC 79 vs BRI 54 Stats
GWS 72 vs ADE 140 Report Stats
GCF 80 vs COL 75 Report Stats
MEL 34 vs FRE 97 Report Stats
PTA 60 vs ESS 62 Report Stats
Sun, 06 JulTimes shown AEST
CAR 151 vs STK 66 Report Stats
WCE 51 vs SYD 79 Report Stats
GEE 69 vs WBU 56 Report Stats
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Round 17
Fri, 11 JulTimes shown AEST
ADE 92 vs HAW 104 Report Stats
Sat, 12 JulTimes shown AEST
MEL 36 vs GEE 102 Report Stats
NTH 92 vs STK 33 Report Stats
WBU 94 vs GCF 66 Report Stats
BRI 64 vs WCE 76 Report Stats
SYD 122 vs CAR 51 Report Stats
Sun, 13 JulTimes shown AEST
RIC 126 vs PTA 106 Report Stats
ESS 103 vs COL 39 Report Stats
FRE 136 vs GWS 60 Report Stats
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Round 18
Fri, 18 JulTimes shown AEST
CAR 109 vs NTH 86 Report Stats
Sat, 19 JulTimes shown AEST
STK 118 vs FRE 60 Report Stats
GWS 87 vs GEE 94 Report Stats
Sun, 20 JulTimes shown AEST
PTA 72 vs MEL 69 Report Stats
WBU 94 vs ESS 101 Report Stats
Fri, 25 JulTimes shown AEST
WCE 42 vs RIC 59 Report Stats
Sat, 26 JulTimes shown AEST
BRI 110 vs GCF 56 Report Stats
HAW 104 vs SYD 94 Report Stats
Sun, 27 JulTimes shown AEST
COL 82 vs ADE 98 Report Stats
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Round 19
Thu, 31 JulTimes shown AEST
FRE 83 vs CAR 78 Report Stats
Fri, 01 AugTimes shown AEST
SYD 79 vs ESS 57 Report Stats
Sat, 02 AugTimes shown AEST
ADE 105 vs WCE 136 Report Stats
RIC 89 vs GWS 62 Report Stats
GCF 117 vs STK 64 Report Stats
NTH 79 vs GEE 111 Report Stats
Sun, 03 AugTimes shown AEST
MEL 51 vs BRI 74 Stats
HAW 107 vs WBU 45 Report Stats
COL 76 vs PTA 70 Report Stats
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Round 20
Fri, 08 AugTimes shown AEST
RIC 95 vs ESS 77 Report Stats
Sat, 09 AugTimes shown AEST
GWS 51 vs NTH 126 Report Stats
CAR 97 vs GCF 58 Report Stats
HAW 115 vs MEL 65 Report Stats
PTA 58 vs SYD 84 Report Stats
GEE 81 vs FRE 79 Report Stats
Sun, 10 AugTimes shown AEST
BRI 63 vs ADE 168 Report Stats
STK 99 vs WBU 122 Report Stats
WCE 126 vs COL 66 Report Stats
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Round 21
Fri, 15 AugTimes shown AEST
CAR 76 vs GEE 82 Report Stats
Sat, 16 AugTimes shown AEST
SYD 127 vs STK 56 Stats
GCF 47 vs PTA 56 Report Stats
ESS 77 vs WCE 74 Report Stats
COL 56 vs BRI 123 Report Stats
ADE 69 vs RIC 79 Report Stats
Sun, 17 AugTimes shown AEST
NTH 111 vs WBU 61 Report Stats
MEL 34 vs GWS 98 Report Stats
FRE 110 vs HAW 91 Report Stats
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Round 22
Fri, 22 AugTimes shown AEST
PTA 140 vs CAR 37 Report Stats
Sat, 23 AugTimes shown AEST
NTH 101 vs ADE 94 Report Stats
ESS 108 vs GCF 89 Report Stats
GWS 67 vs COL 75 Report Stats
WCE 119 vs MEL 53 Report Stats
HAW 94 vs GEE 71 Report Stats
Sun, 24 AugTimes shown AEST
BRI 48 vs FRE 106 Report Stats
WBU 67 vs SYD 130 Report Stats
RIC 98 vs STK 72 Report Stats
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Round 23
Fri, 29 AugTimes shown AEST
COL 56 vs HAW 121 Stats
Sat, 30 AugTimes shown AEST
CAR 90 vs ESS 90 Stats
FRE 105 vs PTA 97 Stats
SYD 65 vs RIC 68 Stats
NTH 123 vs MEL 93 Stats
GEE 143 vs BRI 81 Stats
Sun, 31 AugTimes shown AEST
GCF 99 vs WCE 151 Stats
ADE 141 vs STK 62 Stats
WBU 109 vs GWS 115 Stats
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AFL Finals Round 1
Fri, 05 SepTimes shown AEST
HAW 104 vs GEE 68 Report Stats
Sat, 06 SepTimes shown AEST
SYD 93 vs FRE 69 Stats
NTH 93 vs ESS 81 Stats
Sun, 07 SepTimes shown AEST
PTA 132 vs RIC 75 Report Stats
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AFL Finals Round 2
Fri, 12 SepTimes shown AEST
GEE 92 vs NTH 98 Stats
Sat, 13 SepTimes shown AEST
FRE 83 vs PTA 105 Stats
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AFL Finals Round 3
Fri, 19 SepTimes shown AEST
SYD 136 vs NTH 65 Report Stats
Sat, 20 SepTimes shown AEST
HAW 97 vs PTA 94 Report Stats
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AFL Finals Round 4
Sat, 27 SepTimes shown AEST
SYD 74 vs HAW 137 Report Stats
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AFL Home and Away
Overall standings
Team P W L D % Pts
Sydney Swans 22 17 5 0 142.88 68
Hawthorn 22 17 5 0 140.78 68
Geelong Cats 22 17 5 0 113.77 68
Fremantle 22 16 6 0 130.40 64
Port Adelaide 22 14 8 0 129.92 56
North Melbourne 22 14 8 0 117.04 56
Essendon 22 12 9 1 106.34 50
Richmond 22 12 10 0 105.77 48
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