WA Premier Mark McGowan has warned “very strict rules” will be in place as Perth hosts this year’s AFL Grand Final, in what will be an “historic moment” for the state.
“A happy, exciting day, but of course it’s tempered by the fact that our brothers and sisters in Victoria are going through a very hard time,” Mr McGowan said, as AFL boss Gillon McLachlan announced Perth as the 2021 grand final venue.
“We’ll be able to hold this event in a COVID-safe way, we’ll have all the protocols in place, all the rules in place as we have the last two years to hold football and other sporting events.
“We’ve secured this event on our own terms and we’ve ensured that we put in place the very strictest and strongest of protocols to protect West Australians.
“But it’s very exciting. It’s only the second time in 124 years the Grand Final has left Melbourne and obviously here in Perth it will be a great spectacle.”
He said the event would be a major draw card for tourism, attracting visitors and helping boost WA’s economy.
Public holiday ruled out
But Mr McGowan said there would not be a public holiday in WA to mark the event, as is usual in Victoria.
“It’s a bit late to organise something like that … but it’ll be great anyway, so let’s just enjoy it,” he said.
“There will be a parade and obviously the Brownlow will happen here in Perth.
“We’ll work with the AFL to maximise the excitement, enjoyment and participation of as many people as possible.”
He said some preliminary games in the coming weeks would be played in Perth.
While WA’s border remains shut to most other states, people from South Australia, Tasmania and the Northern Territory will be able to travel into Perth for the game.
The Perth stadium, which opened in 2018, has a 60,000-seat capacity.
Details of available seats have not yet been released.
It hosts Australian Football League, International and Big Bash League cricket, soccer, rugby league and union and music concerts.