AFL players keen to push on with season

Giants coach Leon Cameron wants to see the AFL push on this season if possible.
Giants coach Leon Cameron wants to see the AFL push on this season if possible.

AFL players have supported the league's call to push on with the season despite three Australian capital cities currently under lockdown due to the country's COVID-19 crisis.

A day out from round 19, challenges keep mounting for the AFL to continue the competition and crown a premiership winner on September 25 as planned.

Players have had to isolate after attending coronavirus exposure sites; the fixture has been altered a number of times and clubs have had to be relocated - all causing havoc for the AFL.

The AFL has resisted calls to bring forward the pre-finals bye after South Australia joined Victoria and Greater Sydney in lockdown this week.

That stance has been backed by the AFL Players' Association following several meetings on Wednesday.

GWS have been on the road for weeks and have four players, including Toby Greene, in isolation but coach Leon Cameron was adamant the Giants didn't want the bye brought forward.

"We're pushing on and we're very, very keen to push on," Cameron told reporters on Thursday.

"I understand that there was some chatter about it ... because of all the difficult situations with Victoria, South Australia and clearly New South Wales with some of the border closures.

"But we've been pretty lucky. Yeah, we had to leave Melbourne pretty quickly but so did the Swans, both sides adapted, we played the game.

"It was an unusual build-up on the Sunday night because of what happened ... but the game got played and it was a pretty high standard game.

"So there's nothing to look into (in terms of) saying the prep is holding us back or it's costing us and all that sort of stuff or there needs to be a pause in the season.

"We were really keen to play last Sunday and we're very, very keen to play this Sunday against the Bombers."

The Giants were set to have the families of players and staff - including Cameron's family - fly to Queensland on Thursday to complete 14 days of quarantine before reuniting with GWS' travelling party

Cameron said having families in Queensland would be a "huge boost" and confirmed the travelling group would include forward Bobby Hill, who returned to NSW last week to be with his pregnant partner, and injured ruckman Braydon Preuss, who is building towards an AFL comeback.

Meanwhile, he was confident isolating quartet Greene, Matt De Boer, Kieren Briggs and Jake Stein wouldn't be too far set back by being away from regular training ahead of their return next Wednesday.

"We're really confident that the facilities that they have and where they're staying that they can get the appropriate amount of training," Cameron said.

Australian Associated Press