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The AFL ain't broke, so why do they keep trying to fix it?

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01.06.2019

It seems Australian sports just can’t shake their cultural cringe.

At a meeting of the AFL’s competition committee last week, the American-inspired wildcard round was back on the agenda. Apparently it received "general support" from those in the room.

Melbourne would have benefited from a wildcard round in 2017.Credit:AAP

The proposal would see 7th play 10th and 8th play 9th at the end of the 23 round AFL season, with the two winners securing the final two prized positions in the top 8 and play finals.

Of course, various forms of the wildcard round have been adopted by many US and overseas based competitions for some years, including Major League Baseball and American football’s NFL, to add another layer of razzmatazz and excitement to the pointy end of their seasons.

From an AFL perspective, the rationale is simple. It’s a matter of money. The wildcard weekend will create two extra matches with a lot at stake for the competing teams. Depending on who plays, the matches could attract huge crowds and millions of extra television viewers,........

© The Age