Around the grounds - AFL news of the week

Around the Grounds: Footy price freeze – the fans have been heard!

AFL News for the week ending February 19, 2023: Cost-of-living win for fans, 'Our Cate' talks up the footy and practice matches are here

AFL ticket price freeze for 2023

Just a week after AFLFA president Ron Issko discussed the kinds of issues fans are most concerned about going into AFL Season 2023, headquarters has come out with an early Christmas present for fans.

At a time when rising cost-of-living pressures might have been leading some fans to reconsider where going to the footy fits into their weekly budget this year, the AFL has heard the fans and frozen the cost of general admission tickets for all Melbourne games, meaning these have now been frozen for five years.

And the icing on top?

The AFL is trialling a family ticket package for the first five rounds at all home-and-away matches at the MCG and Marvel, meaning a family of two adults and two children can get to a game for just $54, with kids under four admitted free.

Melbourne girl Cate loves footy and isn't scared to tell the world

There are few Aussie names that are more well-known than Melbourn's own, Cate Blanchett.

An eastern suburbs girl, Cate studied in Melbourne before gaining admission to the prestigious National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) and subsequently becoming one of the great actors of our time.

And, last week she was out there talking up the AFL!

Appearing on the Jimmy Kimmel show, Cate pretty much told him that even with its massive Superbowl event, the biggest sporting event in the world some say, that the NFL as a game has nothing on the AFL.

Great seeing our game talked about on the world stage - Mason Cox was pretty chuffed too.

Practice matches kick off this week

And, if you can't wait for round 1 of the AFL Season 2023 proper, dust off your footy gear early and get out and support your team at some local grounds this coming week when a full range of match simulations kick-off.

Admission is free, with teams to be released later this week.

Here's the schedule:

2023 Match Simulation (February 23-24)

Thursday, February 23
Geelong v Hawthorn, GMHBA Stadium, 4pm AEDT, 4 x 20 mins (plus time on)
Gold Coast v Essendon, Austworld Oval (Carrara), 4pm local (5pm AEDT), 6 x 25 mins (no time on)

Friday, February 24
North Melbourne v Richmond, Arden St, 10am AEDT, 6 periods, 4 x 25 mins and 2 x 20 mins (no time on)
Carlton v Collingwood, Ikon Park, 11am AEDT, 4 x 25 mins (no time on)
Sydney v Brisbane, Tramway Oval (Moore Park), 12pm AEDT, 4 x 25 mins (no time on)
St Kilda v Melbourne, RSEA Park, 4pm AEDT, 6 x 25 mins (no time on)
Fremantle v Adelaide, Victor George Kailis Oval (Cockburn), 3.30pm local (6.30pm AEDT), 6 x 25 mins (no time on)
West Coast v Port Adelaide, Mineral Resources Park (Perth) 4.40pm local (7.40pm AEDT), 6 periods, 4 x 28 mins and 2 x 20 mins (no time on)