Lions take part in AFL trial of new rules

Jason Phelan

The Brisbane Lions are the latest AFL club to take part in a game-simulation trial as the league weighs up potential rule changes.

The Lions held a 20-minute scratch match with modified rules and game conditions at the Gabba on Tuesday, following on from last week's trial undertaken by Hawthorn at Etihad Stadium.

The trials are part of AFL footy boss Steve Hocking's extensive survey on the state of the game, with a view to decreasing congestion and increasing scoring.

Innovations trialled by the Lions and Hawks include having players start in zones at stoppages and centre bounces, allowing players to run 20m without bouncing and kicking in from behinds from 25m out from goal instead of the goal square.

"It certainly looked different ... it looked more open," Lions football chief David Noble told the AFL's website.

"I didn't mind it. It certainly gives you a different look.

"There's more capacity for players to have one-on-ones.

"You've got numbers staggered up the ground rather than the condensation of numbers (and) with that distribution there's more space to work with."

Hocking has already met with industry heavyweights Leigh Matthews, Gerard Healy, Malcolm Blight, Mike Sheahan and Gerard Whateley and several AFL coaches as he seeks opinions on the way forward.

After a period of consultation, a range of measures will be put to the newly formed Competition Committee, which will meet for a second time in late July.

Any changes that meet criteria, which include respecting the history of the game as well as progressing it, will be put to the AFL Commission for implementation in October.