WA's eased restrictions a relief to AFL
Western Australia's strict border stance on visitors from Victoria is on track to be eased ahead of the AFL season, saving the league from altering its fixture.
However, that is all dependent on no further community transmission of COVID-19 in Melbourne.
Victoria is the only state still subject to any WA border restrictions.
The southern state on Friday recorded two new coronavirus positives, but they were close contacts of existing cases and had already been quarantining.
WA premier Mark McGowan said Victoria will reach his government's target of 28 consecutive days without community spread on March 13 - five days before the scheduled AFL season-opener.
"After that point in time I'd expect that we'll move to soften the border if Victoria doesn't have community spread," McGowan told reporters.
The AFL has committed to an unchanged opening round starting on March 18, but beyond that will prove difficult if WA's border conditions do not ease.
Fremantle will tackle Melbourne at the MCG in round one, while the Eagles are due to play the Western Bulldogs at Marvel Stadium the following weekend.
AFL fixture boss Travis Auld concedes there would probably need to be alterations to the draw if WA health advice did not change.
"The challenge will be Fremantle coming to Victoria to play Melbourne," Auld told reporters before McGowan spoke on Friday.
"It presents an issue, as it stands, for Fremantle going back to WA. They would have to quarantine (for 14 days).
"Clearly we have to work with those clubs and the WA government to see if there is a better solution without compromising the health of the community."
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