League adopts grand final rotation policy for rising women’s competition

Taj StubberAlbany Advertiser
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Royals’ Rachael Goetze, North Albany’s Skye Cordon, Mt Barker’s Mikayla Richardson, Denmark-Walpole’s Brittany Finigan, Railways’ Maddie Dallimore and Albany’s Mel Mettam ahead of the 2020 season.
Camera IconRoyals’ Rachael Goetze, North Albany’s Skye Cordon, Mt Barker’s Mikayla Richardson, Denmark-Walpole’s Brittany Finigan, Railways’ Maddie Dallimore and Albany’s Mel Mettam ahead of the 2020 season. Credit: Laurie Benson

The Great Southern Women’s Football League grand final venue will be rotated from this year on.

The GSWFL, run by the Great Southern Football League, has grown rapidly since its inception in 2018.

The women’s grand final attracts hundreds of spectators for the decider, as was seen at Centennial Stadium in 2019 in a bumper night-time fixture.

Last year’s GSWFL season was cancelled after seven rounds due to COVID-19 but the 2021 GSWFL season will begin this month, again consisting of six teams.

The GSFL confirmed the women’s grand final would now be rotated starting from this year, the same as with the men’s decider.

Railways will host the 2021 decider at Tigerland on April 23 after they were set to host the grand final last year.

Denmark will host the grand final next year, followed by Royals, Mt Barker, North Albany and Albany.

The preliminary finals will be played on April 16 at the venue of the highest-ranked club at the end of the regular season.

The first round of the 2021 season will be played on January 31, with the final regular round set down for April 9.

Each team plays every other team twice before a top-four finals system.

First and fourth will play off in a preliminary final, and second and third will also clash for a spot in the decider.

North Albany's Jaz Smargiassi gets her kick away as Royals' Danielle Tion tackles.
Camera IconNorth Albany's Jaz Smargiassi gets her kick away as Royals' Danielle Tion tackles. Credit: Taj Stubber

GSFL president Joe Burton said it was an exciting time in women’s footy.

“It’s pretty exciting and it draws a big crowd, which brings a great atmosphere,” he said.

“Numbers are getting too high, so we might look at a back-up competition.

“It’s a problem, but a good problem to have.

“We might look at an underage competition as well, because the schoolgirls training are so talented.

“It is very noticeable, the improvement of the skills and game style throughout the comp.

“The Albany clubs really stepped up last year and improved enormously, and Denmark and Barker were a bit behind in their first season but will continue to improve.”

Burton said it was important to rotate the grand final in fairness to all clubs.

“We tried to make it in town and out of town to break it up,” he said.

“We wanted to keep the whole competition together with the men and women and keep the out-of-town teams involved.

“A grand final out of town might just keep them clubs going.”

GSWFL fairest and best 2020 Mel Mettam.
Camera IconGSWFL fairest and best 2020 Mel Mettam. Credit: Laurie Benson

GSWFL 2020 SEASON FIXTURES

Round 1 Friday, January 29

Railways v North Albany

5.45pm at Tigerland

Mt Barker v Royals

6.15pm at Sounness Park

Denmark-Walpole v Albany

6.30pm at McLean Park

Round 2 Friday, February 5

North Albany v Albany

5.45pm at Centennial Stadium

Denmark-Walpole v Mt Barker

6.15pm at McLean Park

Royals v Railways

7.15pm at Centennial Stadium

Round 3 Friday, February 12

Albany v Royals

5.45pm at Centennial Stadium

North Albany v Denmark-Walpole

6.15pm at Oval U Eastern Precinct

Railways v Mt Barker

7.15pm at Centennial Stadium

Round 4 Friday, February 19

Royals v North Albany

5.45pm at Collingwood Park

Mt Barker v Albany

6.15pm at Sounness Park

Railways v Denmark-Walpole

7.15pm at Collingwood Park

Round 5 Friday, February 26

Albany v Railways

5.45pm at Tigerland

Mt Barker v North Albany

6.15pm at Oval U Eastern Precinct

Royals v Denmark-Walpole

7.15pm at Tigerland

Round 6Friday, March 5

Royals v Mt Barker

5.45pm at Centennial Stadium

North Albany v Railways

5.45pm at Oval U Eastern Precinct

Albany v Denmark-Walpole

7.15pm at Centennial Stadium

Round 7Friday, March 12

Albany v North Albany

5.45pm at Collingwood Park

Mt Barker v Denmark-Walpole

6.15pm at Sounness Park

Railways v Royals

7.15pm at Collingwood Park

Round 8Friday, March 19

Royals v Albany

5.45pm at Tigerland

Denmark-Walpole v North Albany

6.15 pm at Collingwood Park

Mt Barker v Railways

7.15pm at Tigerland

Round 9Friday, March 26

North Albany v Royals

5.45pm at Collingwood Park

Denmark-Walpole v Railways

6.15pm at McLean Park

Albany v Mt Barker

7.15pm at Collingwood Park

Round 10Friday, April 9

Railways v Albany

5.45pm at Tigerland

Denmark-Walpole v Royals

6.15pm at McLean Park

Mt Barker v North Albany

7.15pm at Tigerland

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