As big a fan of history as I am, common sense has trumped all in the AFL commission’s latest ruling, that there will no longer be a replay should there be a drawn grand final.
Traditionally a drawn decider has led to a replay a week later, which means another day of extreme excitement, but it is not practical in 2016.
Instead, the decider, should it end with scores level, will lead to two five-minute periods of extra time.
If the scores remain deadlocked at the end of the ten minute extra-time period, the game will continue until the next score, when a winner will be declared.
I have to admit, I was not a fan of the grand final replay.
There should only be one grand final. Knowing that a premiership will be awarded on the day creates a level of excitement that is unmatched.
As much as the win in 2010’s replayed grand final meant for fans of the Magpies, I bet it would have felt all the sweeter should they have kicked the winning goal after an amazing game on an equally brilliant occasion a week earlier.
As dominant as Collingwood was in the replay, no one talks about that game when asked about the 2010 decider. The game should have been decided right there and then.
The fact that it could have been an all-Western Australian Grand Final last year may have had a real hurry up effect on this decision.
West Coast fans spent hundreds, even thousands of dollars, travelling across the country to see their team play on the biggest day of the season.
Can you imagine flying home and having to do it all over again if the game has finished in a draw?
It is tough for the average fan to find the spare cash to go through that experience once, let alone twice.
There should only be one grand final day and I for one am very happy to see this decision handed down.
Unfortunately for the brilliant decision that was announced, an equally disappointing decision accompanied it.
I cannot believe that the AFL would look to implement a ‘golden point’ scenario to decide the game if scores are still tied after the second period of extra time.
Should the scores be level at ten minutes of extra time, the game plays on and a rushed behind can decide the title.
I can’t see why the common sense decision of adding on another five minutes until the game is decided was not made.
I understand that technically a game could go on forever if this was the case, but surely it will be extremely rare that on grand final day, scores will be tied at full time, and again after ten extra minutes and also another five minutes.
If player welfare is the worry, after fifteen minutes of extra time, whoever has kicked the most goals lifts the cup. I know this is anticlimactic but I honestly can’t see a reason this ruling would ever be used.
Surely a sprayed point isn’t worthy of deciding a premiership. I would rather see it decided on goals kicked if it can not be decided on overall points.
Do not get me wrong, I have seen some amazing points win games. Jimmy Bartel’s point after the siren to beat the Hawks at a packed MCG is still the highlight of my AFL fan experience.
I just do not want to see a premiership awarded after seeing a player miss.
This decision is certainly a win for fans, but I think the implementation of the golden point rule rather than needing a major to decide a winner is a bit of a head scratcher.