AFL moves Brownlow due to Queen's funeral

·2-min read

The AFL has moved the Brownlow Medal away from the traditional Monday night before the grand final to avoid a clash with the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II.

The AFL's biggest night of the year was scheduled to be held at Crown Casino in Melbourne on September 19.

But AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan has confirmed the league will stage the Brownlow on September 18 instead, out of respect for the late Queen.

The funeral service for Queen Elizabeth II has not been confirmed, but it will almost certainly be held on September 19.

The move is not without precedent, with the AFL rescheduling a qualifying final in 1997 so it did not clash with the funeral of Princess Diana.

"We have had a lot of practice over the last two years at being agile when needed and I want to thank the Seven Network, Crown Melbourne and all our partners for being so accommodating with this decision," McLachlan said.

"It's the right one, and we're incredibly glad to have their support.

"In the lead-up to the AFL grand final, the Brownlow is the AFL's night of nights, and we look forward to celebrating the medal count accordingly on the Sunday night."

Brisbane Lions star Lachie Neale, Fremantle young gun Andrew Brayshaw and Melbourne premiership hero Clayton Oliver are the leading contenders for the AFL's highest individual honour.

Tributes continue to flow for the late Queen, with the MCG lights turned off before the Melbourne-Brisbane semi-final on Friday night as 62,162 fans observed a minute's silence.

The AFL also played part of God Save The Queen before the national anthem as the Demons and Lions teams stood on the field.

But the league has scrapped plans to hold a minute's silence ahead of each AFLW game this weekend.

The AFLW is in the midst of its Indigenous round and clubs had expressed concerns over a lack of consultation before the AFL announced its decision to hold the minute's silence.

There was a minute's silence ahead of Friday evening's game between the Western Bulldogs and Fremantle, but the AFL backflipped later that night.

The outside of the MCG was also lit up in purple in memory of the Queen.

In the NRL, a minute's silence was observed at Penrith's BlueBet Stadium for the Panthers' qualifying final against Parramatta.