The AFL has confirmed venue arrangements for the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Finals Series.
For the first time, the 2023 Smithy’s VFL season will feature a Wildcard Round, which will be played across the weekend of August 26-27, following the final round of the home-and-away season.
Wildcard Round will feature two matches. The team that finishes the home-and-away season in seventh position on the ladder will play the team that finishes 10th, while eighth will take on ninth.
The highest-ranked winner in Wildcard Round will advance to the second elimination final as the seventh-placed team, with the lowest-ranked winner in Wildcard Round to progress to the first elimination final as the eighth-placed team.
The top-six teams on the ladder at the conclusion of the 2023 Smithy’s VFL home-and-away season will have a bye during Wildcard Round and will advance directly through to either a qualifying final or elimination final.
2023 Smithy’s VFL Finals Series Structure
Saturday, August 26 and/or Sunday, August 27
Wildcard Game One: 7th vs 10th
Wildcard Game Two: 8th vs 9th
Qualifying and Elimination Finals
Saturday, September 2 and/or Sunday, September 3
First Qualifying Final: 1st vs 4th
Second Qualifying Final: 2nd vs 3rd
First Elimination Final: 5th vs Lowest-ranked Wildcard Round winner (becomes 8th)
Second Elimination Final: 6th vs Highest-ranked Wildcard Round winner (becomes 7th)
Saturday, September 9 and/or Sunday, September 10
First Semi Final: Loser of First Qualifying Final vs Winner of First Elimination Final
Second Semi Final: Loser of Second Qualifying Final vs Winner of Second Elimination Final
Saturday, September 16
First Preliminary Final: Winner of First Qualifying Final vs Winner of Second Semi Final
Second Preliminary Final: Winner of Second Qualifying Final vs Winner of First Semi Final
Sunday, September 24
Grand Final: Winner of First Preliminary Final vs Winner of Second Preliminary Final
2023 Smithy’s VFL Grand Final
The AFL has confirmed IKON Park will host the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Grand Final on Sunday, September 24 unless two Queensland-based teams are competing.
In the event of two Queensland-based teams reaching the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Grand Final, the match will be played on Sunday, September 24 at Brighton Homes Arena.
2023 Smithy’s VFL Finals Series (Wildcard Round to Preliminary Finals)
The AFL has confirmed for all other matches in the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Finals Series, the highest-ranked team will have the option to host the final, subject to meeting venue infrastructure requirements and there being no scheduling clashes with an AFLW match.
Admission prices for the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Finals Series are as follows:
For all matches during the Wildcard Round through to the Preliminary Finals, admission prices will be adults $15, concession/pensioners $10 and children under 15 free.
For the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Grand Final, admission prices will be adults $20, concession/pensioners $15 and children under 15 free.
Any further advice on ticketing arrangements will be provided ahead of each week of the finals series.
The AFL is pleased to confirm that seven matches in the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Finals Series will be broadcast live and free on the Seven Network via Channel 7 and 7plus, including the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Grand Final. Viewers outside of Victoria can tune in to Seven’s VFL coverage via 7plus.
All finals, including the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Grand Final, will be streamed live and free on AFL.com.au and the AFL Live Official App.
Existing VFL and AFL media accreditation will remain in place and valid for the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Finals Series, including the 2023 Smithy’s VFL Grand Final.
VFL/W Awards Night
The 2023 VFL and VFLW Awards Night will be hosted at Palladium at Crown on Monday, September 18. Among the awards that will be presented are the J. J. Liston Trophy and Lambert-Pearce Medal.