Could the Suns be footy hub? Picture: Getty Images
Could the Suns be footy hub? Picture: Getty Images

Suns boss backs Coast as AFL hub

Gold Coast Suns CEO Mark Evans believes there is a "very strong chance" south-east Queensland will be used as one of the locations for an AFL hub.

His comments follow Victoria's chief health officer Brett Sutton saying there is a possibility the season could re-start as soon as June.

The league is currently scouring the country in search of the best hub locations.

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Evans said the Suns are weeks into their planning to ensure they are ready to host multiple games per week if called upon.

"Initially that planning was, how do we host individual games like we did in Round 1?" he explained.

"But we have already quickly turned to, how would we host multiple games in multiple days and what we would need to do to prepare the ground for that?

"I think it's a very, very strong chance (that south-east Queensland is used) but it will be subject to government and health authorities in Queensland and also the other states and what's available."

Evans pointed to the weather in the country's north as one of its main benefits as a hub location.

The Suns have also had some conversations with the Lions about how a joint hub would work.

However, the Lions do not control the operations at the Gabba making their situation tougher.

"You want to make sure you can give them (players and staff) a relaxing experience away from training, away from matches and away from meetings and certainly to be able to swim or to be able to walk along the beach or things like that, (it puts) this area of Australia in very good stead," Evans said.

While Sutton was hopeful a number of banned activities could soon re-start, he also warned that leaders need to remain mindful that the coronavirus situation could still move in the wrong direction in the next month.

The federal government will set up national principles to help states decide whether elite and local sports can return.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed the move on Friday to assist the states, with the NRL leading the charge ahead of their planned May 28 return.

"(It's a) set of principles that States and Territories can draw on in terms of getting some consistency across the country as we move into this next phase," Morrison said.

The AFL initially hoped to make an annoucement next week regarding a season return date. However, an update is now expected in early May.


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