AFL on Free to Air
Starting in 2017, the twenty-three rounds of the AFL Premiership will be for the most part held three days a week, Friday to Sunday. The AFL Free to Air coverage on Seven Network will include live telecasts of the Friday night game, up to two matches on Saturday, one contest on Sunday afternoon, and any games that fall on a public holiday or a Monday. Channel 7 will also broadcast the entire Final series live, including the Grand Final.
Channel Seven vs Foxtel
While the Channel Seven television coverage is limited, Foxtel will televise every game in every Round Live, before the Grand Final, with up to five exclusive matches each week to include the games on Saturday and Sunday night.
Friday Night: Ch. 7 and Foxtel
Saturday Afternoon Game 1: Ch. 7 and Foxtel
Saturday Afternoon Game 2: Foxtel
Saturday Evening: Foxtel
Saturday Night Game 1: Ch. 7 and Foxtel
Saturday Night Game 2: Foxtel
Sunday Afternoon Game 1: Foxtel
Sunday Afternoon Game 2: Ch. 7 and Foxtel
Sunday Evening: Foxtel
Monday & Public Holidays: Ch. 7 and Foxtel
The above listing offers a guide for what games are shown on each channel, Australia-wide, and does not reflect Channel Seven’s free to air state-to-state variations which may also include:
New South Wales (NSW) – Sydney: All GWS Giants and Sydney Swans matches will be televised by the Seven Network, primarily on their 7Mate and 7HD channels.
Queensland (QLD) – Brisbane: All Gold Coast Suns and Brisbane Lions matches will be televised by the Seven Network, primarily on their 7Mate and 7HD channels.
South Australia (SA) – Adelaide: All Port Adelaide Power and Adelaide Crows matches will be televised by the Seven Network across Channel 7, as well as 7Mate and 7HD.
Western Australia (WA) – Perth: All Fremantle Dockers and West Coast Eagles matches will be televised by the Seven Network, live, alternating between Channel 7 and 7Mate.
ACT – Canberra: All GWS Giants and Sydney Swans matches will be televised by the Seven Network, primarily on their 7Mate and 7HD channels.
Victoria – Melbourne: No special Free to Air broadcasting arrangements apply.
Northern Territories (NT) – Darwin: No special Free to Air broadcasting arrangements apply.
Tasmania – Hobart: No special Free to Air broadcasting arrangements apply.
AFL Players to Watch
All eyes will be on star midfielder for the Gold Coast Suns, Gary Ablett Jr, who has really struggled to find his brilliant best since a serious shoulder and knee injuries. He played most of 2016, but seemingly underdone and lacking that polish that we know he has got. The Suns have recruited well during the off season and if Ablett can fire like we know he can, the Suns will go close to making the top eight, and best of all you can watch the AFL online with an eligible device.
The man that won the Brownlow Medal in 2015 Nat Fyfe. The Dockers star produced some unbelievable numbers in the first half of that season, but injury really restricted him and the Dockers towards premiership glory, but he showed great courage in the Prelim Final given he played most of the game with a broken leg. Broke the same leg in the opening minutes of the 2016 season and was kept on ice for the year. Looks fit and firing in the pre season and was announced as captain of Fremantle.
The man that took the Brownlow off Fyfe last year was Geelong Cats phenom Patrick Dangerfield. He was first class in the second half of 2015 for his former club, Adelaide, and wasn’t far off winning the Brownlow then, but the move to Geelong worked wonders for Danger as he starred for the Cats and pretty much wrapped up the Brownlow in the opening half of the year. He moved to Geelong for premiership success, and it will be very interesting to see how they perform in 2017.
AFL Teams to Watch
It is a general consensus that supporters have their team to cheer on, but their second team is the Sydney Swans. Injuries hurt them bad towards the end of 2015, which saw them bow out of the finals in straight sets. The same thing happened towards the end of 2016, but they made the Grand Final before losing to the Doggies. The Swans are set to go close in 2017 all things being equal, and you can stream the AFL live with a compatible device.
The Western Bulldogs are the reigning premiers and are now the hunted, not the hunter, but that is something that they should lap up given their nature of being ferocious and loving a contest, as we saw throughout the Finals Series last year, especially in the Grand Final when too good for the Swans. You need to be a great team to defend a premiership successfully. Are they a great team? Time will tell.
Most people wouldn’t begrudge the Fremantle Dockers of their maiden premiership. They have been so close in recent years, but last year was a real flop for coach Ross Lyon and the club as they dropped from first to 16th, the biggest slide in regular season history of the VFL/AFL. They have recruited really well in the off season and are healthy. They look set for a sharp bounce back.
The side tipped to strongly challenge for the premiership is the Greater Western Sydney Giants. GWS were one of the more outstanding sides of the 2016 season, and came so close to making the Grand Final, but lost narrowly to the Dogs in the Prelim Final. They are a young side with great promise and are expected by many to go a couple of steps further and claim the flag, with their 2017 Anzac Day match against the Sydney Swans one of the bigger tests.