Blockbusters to restart AFL season

AFL fans will be given clarity on the 2020 season restart on Monday with the league poised to confirm multiple blockbusters in the first week back.

Victorian heavyweights Richmond and Collingwood will kick-start the stalled season on June 11, followed by a clash between arch-rivals Geelong and Hawthorn the following night.

The Showdown in South Australia is reportedly set to be played in the prime Saturday night slot on June 13.

Queensland hub-bound West Coast and Fremantle are slated to take on Gold Coast and Brisbane respectively, while round-one losers Carlton and Melbourne lock horns in a crunch clash.

Sunday will reportedly feature GWS-North Melbourne, Sydney-Essendon and St Kilda-Western Bulldogs meetings.

The new schedule of matches will likely be released in four-week blocks, allowing the AFL flexibility to adapt to changing coronavirus restrictions later in the year.

The restart to competition follows weeks of negotiations between the AFL, its clubs, state governments and relevant health authorities.

Geelong are set to be unveiled as big winners, successful in their bid to play all matches at their Kardinia Park fortress.

Collingwood forward Jordan De Goey.

Round two will be Hawthorn's first trip to GMHBA Stadium since 2006.

Government restrictions preventing crowds for the time being means that the high-drawing fixtures the Cats usually 'host' at the much larger capacity MCG can be played in Geelong.

As such, Victorian power clubs Collingwood and Essendon could potentially play down the highway for the first time this century.

SA rivals Adelaide and Port Adelaide will clash on home soil before relocating to their temporary hub on the Gold Coast to play the rest of their matches in the first block of fixtures.

However, the Crows and the Power are still hopeful that further relaxation of SA travel restrictions will soon allow them to fly in and out of Adelaide.

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