Chad Cornes
Chad Cornes

Reigning premiers Sydney will have an advantage over their rivals next year with the AFL revealing that the Swans will get to play this year's wooden spooners Greater Western Sydney twice in 2013.

The AFL outlined some new key areas surrounding next year's fixture with the Swans already looking like the big winners before the full fixture is released later this month.

This year's top four - Sydney, Hawthorn, Collingwood and Adelaide - will only play the bottom four sides - GWS, Gold Coast, Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs - once with the exception of the Swans and Giants, who will meet twice as they are crosstown rivals.

In other new developments, the bottom 10 sides from 2012 will all be scheduled to have a maximum of two return meetings with top-eight sides.

And where possible, the eight finalists from 2012 will all be programmed to have a maximum of two return meetings against sides in the bottom 10.

There will be four Thursday matches in 2013 across Round 1, Anzac Day Round (two matches on Thursday April 25) and Round 14, along with two Monday night matches in Round 7 (Melbourne) and Round 10 (Perth) respectively.

Also, as Port Adelaide and West Coast travelled in the final round of this year's season, they will be scheduled at home in Round 23 with Adelaide and Fremantle set to play away from their respective states in the final week before the finals.

The fixture will follow the model used this year with each club playing 22 games over 23 rounds and for the period where clubs have their byes between Rounds 11-13, the AFL will again schedule three rounds of six matches with the goal of a team from each state competing in a match in each week through that period.

Sportal

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