EXPLAINER: How will the top-six finals series work?

THE 2021 NAB AFLW season will mark the first time a top-six finals series has been used.

THE RUN HOME Who will snatch the last finals spot?

After two years of conferences, a single ladder has been implemented for this year, meaning the brand-new finals structure will be rolled out.

Are there any advantages to finishing higher on the ladder?

Yes. The top two sides will have a week off and host a lower-ranked team in a home preliminary final on the weekend of April 10 and 11.

What happens for teams who finish from third to sixth?

All four sides will feature in qualifying finals, to be held across the weekend of April 3 and 4.

The third-place team will host the sixth-place team in Qualifying Final A, while the fourth-place team will host the fifth-place team in Qualifying Final B.

My team has finished in the top two. Who will they play in the preliminary final?

After putting their feet up for a week, the first-place side will host the winner of Qualifying Final B (fourth v fifth).

Likewise, after the second-placed team's week off, they will host the winner of Qualifying Final A (third v sixth).

I've got my eyes on the prize. Who hosts the Grand Final?

The decider will be played between the winner of the preliminary finals on the weekend of April 17 and 18.

Whoever finished higher on the ladder at the end of the home and away season will have hosting rights for the Grand Final.

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