Greater Shepparton City Council, AFL and AFL Goulburn Murray are excited to announce that Shepparton will be one of three regional locations in Victoria to host an AFL JLT Community Series Match.
Deakin Reserve will host the 2017 premiers Richmond to take on Melbourne on Sunday 3 March 2019.
Greater Shepparton City Council Chief Executive Officer, Peter Harriott said he was eager to see the two teams kick off on the local field.
“Personally, as a diehard Richmond supporter, I can’t wait to see the Tigers play right here in my home town,” Mr Harriott said.
“We in Greater Shepparton are extremely proud of our premier ground, Deakin Reserve. And it is due to the nature and standard of the facilities and quality of the ground that we have been selected to host a 2019 JLT Community Series AFL match.”
With the announcement Greater Shepparton continues to be recognised as Australia’s regional sporting capital as we have once again been selected to host an AFL pre-season competition match.
Region General Manager for AFL Goulburn Murray Jamie Macri said it would provide a members of the community with a unique sporting experience.
“We’re proud to welcome AFL football to the region, and it is a wonderful opportunity for country people to see and mix with AFL players,” Mr Macri said.
“Shepparton is in a great geographical location to host a AFL JLT game.
“Deakin Reserve is a premier sporting facility that can hold up to 10,000 people.”
Council hopes this experience will encourage young athletes to pick up a football.
“Hosting professional sport at this elite level in a regional area serves as an inspiration to showcase to young boys and girls what they can aspire to through hard work, commitment and discipline, as we continue to see the growth of AFL and AFLW regionally and nationally,” Mr Harriott said.
The 2016 AFL NAB Challenge match between Essendon vs Geelong held at Deakin Reserve saw 6,000 in attendance, with game day contributing $500,000 to the Greater Shepparton economy.
Council truly values the strong working relationship we have with the AFL and AFL Goulburn Murray, and we look forward to continuing to work with both organisations to ensure the success of the 2019 JLT Community Series AFL match.