West Coast’s Elliot Yeo is one happy camper that the AFL season will begin as scheduled, but not as we really know it.
While major sporting events around the world have been cancelled, the AFL has chosen to press ahead in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We had a conference call on Tuesday and we all said we were pretty keen to play,” Yeo told Botica’s Bunch on Thursday. “It was just a matter of waiting to see whether or not they’d let us.”
Part of the COVID-19-related changes, including a 17-round season, were that quarters have been reduced to 16.5 minutes. Lisa asked Yeo if he had any insight into the shorter quarters.
“I think it could be because they might try and cram a fair few games in a small sort of block, but I’m not 100% sure just yet,” he said.
“They reckon the virus could get pretty bad in the next couple weeks and, at that point, if it’s gets to full lockdown mode, hopefully there’s a few games under the belt and in the bank.”
Fred asked Yeo how he’s going to handle playing to empty seats.
“Eerie, definitely,” he replied. “And we’re certainly a team that thrives on the crowd… we’ll have to create our own energy… looking out, running around, not hearing anything, you’ll be able to hear some players saying a few things when before you couldn’t,” Yeo said.
“Everything you call each other!” Lisa remarked.
Yeo suggested they might then have to have a 10-second delay on the broadcast.
The Bunch then put a rumour to Yeo – that Fremantle player’s partners were told they had to either work from home or move out of the house.
“That’s the first I’ve heard about it,” Yeo said.
Fred asked “so, it’s not happening at the Eagles then?”
To which Yeo laughed and said no comment.
“If it is true let me know,’ Yeo said
“It could be some good ammo to use on-field.”