The AFL’s first grand final venture into Queensland has got off to an encouraging start after tickets for Saturday’s premiership decider that went on general sale on Tuesday morning were snapped up within 20 minutes.
It is the first time in more than 20 years tickets for the grand final have gone on sale to the general public, after the game was moved from the MCG to the Gabba due to Victoria’s second wave of coronavirus.
Geelong and Richmond members had a chance to purchase tickets on Monday, but that allocation was limited to those Cats and Tigers fans already in Queensland, or in states where travel to Brisbane is allowed.
The AFL said further tickets may become available on Thursday as a result of any unused allocations. The crowd at the Gabba on Saturday will be capped at 30,000.
The 2020 grand final is being played outside of Victoria for the first time in the game’s history, and the second time in the past 75 years a VFL/AFL decider has been staged away from its traditional home of the MCG.
In another experimental move, the game will start in the evening under the Gabba lights, a shift away from the traditional afternoon bounce.
The AFL also announced on Tuesday tennis world No 1 Ash Barty, a lifelong Richmond fan, will present the premiership cup in the event of a Tigers victory. Former Geelong captain Ian Nankervis is standing by in the event of a Cats win.
“I was surprised and very honoured when [Richmond president] Peggy [O’Neal] asked me to present the cup,” said Queenslander Barty, who has been in attendance in the stands at the Tigers’ two finals at Metricon Stadium and the Gabba earlier this month.
“I know there are many other Richmond people who would normally do this but given the circumstances I am very grateful for the opportunity. I wish the boys all the best for Saturday and very much hope I have the chance to be out there when the siren goes celebrating another Richmond premiership.”