Hawthorn president Jeff Kennett has backed Sydney’s ANZ Stadium as a potential suitor for the 2020 AFL Grand Final should the MCG be unavailable.
An interstate AFL Grand Final has been gaining momentum all week following Victoria’s recent COVID-19 spike.
Veteran AFL reporter Caroline Wilson revealed on Nine’s Footy Classified earlier this week that this year’s decider could be played at ANZ Stadium.
“There’s every chance now that the Grand Final will leave Victoria. Sydney is framing as the favourite at the moment,” Wilson said.
Should Sydney be considered over the likes of Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide, Kennett offered New South Wales his full support due to ANZ Stadium’s ability to hold close to 80,000 fans.
“If we are unable to hold it at the MCG because of a lack of crowds, I think Sydney is the obvious choice,” Kennett told the Herald Sun.
“It will give more Australians from across the country an opportunity to attend.
“It would be played at the Homebush stadium and that is probably the appropriate place.
“That’s where I would prefer because it’s easier to get to for supporters.”
Kennett said Perth’s Optus Stadium which fits 60,000 shouldn’t be considered.
“It’s a longer flight and God only knows what you would catch while you were there,” he said.
The Hawthorn boss also said he expects the AFL to not be forced to honour its MCG contract which currently has grand final venue rights until at least 2057.
Kennett took aim at the Victorian Government’s handling of quarantine hotels and believes their “mishandling” of the pandemic will allow the AFL to move the grand final.
“There’s a long way to go yet but if we are still unable to have people at the ground, I don’t think the Government, given its pathetic performance, could ask the AFL to go against the public interest, which would be to have as many people as possible attend the Grand Final,” Kennett said.
“We have a contract in place but if we can’t stage a Grand Final here at the MCG there is only one group of people you can blame and that’s the Government for so mishandling both the Cedar Meats and quarantine hotels.”