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Melbourne gears up for AFL final replay -

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Melbourne gears up for AFL final replay

Broadcast: 01/10/2010

Reporter: Hamish Fitzsimmons

While Grand Final week is usually a big deal in Melbourne, the build-up to Collingwood and St
Kilda's replay has been a decidedly different affair.


TICKY FULLERTON, PRESENTER: And now for some more contact sport. Tomorrow, St Kilda and Collingwood
will meet again to decide the winner of the 2010 AFL season.

Last Saturday's draw before 100,000 people has been acknowledged as one of the best grand finals in
years and there are hopes that tomorrow's game will be just as exciting.

To allow for a result in the unlikely event of another draw, the AFL has changed its rules for the
game and made an allowance for extra time.

While grand final week is usually a big deal in Melbourne, 'replay week' has been a decidedly
different affair.

Hamish Fitzsimmons reports from Melbourne.

HAMISH FITZSIMMONS, REPORTER: In the words of one great coach it's 'deja vu all over again' as St
Kilda and Collingwood prepare to replay the grand final tomorrow at 2:30.

The contrast to last week's build up couldn't be more stark and for the players the stakes are just
as high.

NICK RIEWOLDT, ST KILDA CAPTAIN: It's not a typical grand final build up but at the end of the day
there's still the same prize on offer. So you only have to remind yourself of that and it's pretty
easy to stay motivated.

HAMISH FITZSIMMONS: No parade and muted media coverage, but the Collingwood faithful still packed
the team's last training run this morning.

COLLINGWOOD FAN: Come back from Perth this week so it's good to be here and easy win tomorrow.

HAMISH FITZSIMMONS: Last Saturday St Kilda and Collingwood played out only the third drawn AFL
grand final in history. Under the sport's rules another game has to be played a week later.

The encounter will be as every bit as torrid as last week. But this Saturday the AFL has allowed
for extra, time in the unlikely event of another draw.

MICK MALTHOUSE, COLLINGWOOD COACH: Someone said lightning doesn't strike twice in the same spot and
then a scientist said to me 'do you want to bet?' and I thought I don't want to take that bet on.

Who knows, but it's the correct call this week.

HAMISH FITZSIMMONS: Australia's preeminent historian and football fan, Geoffrey Blaney, who's
attended all three drawn grand finals 1948, 1977 and last week's, says resolving a draw is a vexed
issue for the AFL.

GEOFFREY BLANEY, HISTORIAN: And to say to them you've got to play an extra 20 minutes is really
very hard on the players. On the other hand having a kick for goal, you know each team, let's say
having five kicks for goal from a certain position, is a very artificial way of ending a match.

HAMISH FITZSIMMONS: Earlier this week the AFL said it would work with charity and community groups
to ensure some disadvantaged people could get access to the game.

ANDREW DEMETRIOU, AFL CHIEF EXECUTIVE: People who might be doing it hard and hopefully we can make
sure that there's some tickets available for those people.

HAMISH FITZSIMMONS: While the AFL says it wanted to make the game more accessible to people it
couldn't afford tickets it's given away just 200 seats to charities. The MCG can accommodate more
than 100,000 people.

It might be difficult to match last weekend's sell out 100,000 strong crowd but the league is
hopeful it can come close.

Hamish Fitzsimmons, Lateline.