Sydney AFL derby could take place in Ballarat
The AFL Sydney derby will likely be played in Ballarat with GWS and Swans facing an extended stay in Victoria due to the coronavirus crisis in NSW.
Both Sydney clubs may have to remain based in Melbourne for the remainder of the season, as the NSW COVID-19 outbreak continues to worsen.
The state recorded 112 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, with the NRL on Sunday following the lead of the AFL and moving its teams from NSW between states.
AFL games are already scheduled at MCG on Saturday, with GWS and the Swans game locked for a 1:45 p.m. start, but this is the last game remaining for the 18th round with no confirmed venue.
The GMHBA stadium is free, but given that it is a home game for the Giants, they will try to avoid playing there due to the Swans’ excellent record at the Geelong site.
Sydney smashed the West Coast by 92 points at Geelong in the 16th round and has the recent best record for a team other than the Cats on the ground now having four of their last five games there.
GWS tasted Ballarat’s Mars Stadium on Sunday, but lost to Gold Coast by one point.
The Giants upset the Swans at SCG earlier in the season, coming from behind to win by two points.
Both clubs have been based in Victoria since June 22 and are pushing for family members to join players and staff in Melbourne, but that still seems unlikely.