AFL Announces Blockbuster 2015 Round 1 Schedule

The AFL has announced a blockbuster round of games to kick off the 2015 season in the first week of April.

Brisbane recruit Dayne Beams will make his Lions debut against former club Collingwood in what promises to be a heated clash at the Gabba on Saturday, April 4 after the 2012 Copeland Trophy winner orchestrated a trade period deal which saw him return to his home state of Queensland.

Thursday night’s April 4 season opener will pit old rivals and recent underachievers Carlton against Richmond in a clash sure to draw a significant crowd to the lone Easter Thursday fixture at the MCG.

Sunday, April 5 will be highlighted by a 2014 semi-final rematch between Fremantle and the rising Port Adelaide at Patersons Stadium, following the Power’s major second half upset in a 22-point victory over the 2013 grand finalists in mid-September.

The league will cap off the round 1 festivities with an early encounter between old rivals Geelong and premiers Hawthorn on Easter Monday.

The AFL’s full season 2015 fixture will be released on Thursday, October 30.

League boss Gillon McLachlan has made a number of changes to the schedule this season, pushing back Saturday night games by 20 minutes to a 7.20 pm bounce down, abandoning Sunday night action and reinstating the traditional Saturday afternoon MCG match after reducing that number down to eight games in 2014.

“We’ve listened to what people have said,” McLachlan said. “(Fans have) told us that Saturday night games are finishing too late particularly for families with young children and supporters coming in from country areas.”

“We’ve looked at the research and we made the call some time ago that the 2015 fixture will be attendance-focused.”

AFL Round 1 Fixture

Thursday, April 2

Carlton v Richmond

Saturday, April 4

Melbourne v Gold Coast

Sydney Swans v Essendon

Brisbane Lions v Collingwood

Western Bulldogs v West Coast

Sunday, April 5

St Kilda v Greater Western Sydney

Adelaide v North Melbourne

Fremantle v Port Adelaide

Monday, April 6

Hawthorn v Geelong

Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images


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