The AFL thanks supporters, players, clubs and the wider football community for the strong start to the 2022 NAB AFLW Competition which saw the one millionth supporter attend an AFLW game since the first ever match in 2017.
A total of 1,007,481 Australians have attended a NAB AFLW game since the historic lockout between Carlton and Collingwood at Ikon Park five years ago.
Supporters of AFLW are not only attending games in strong numbers – almost one million Australians tuned in to the broadcasts of Round One (954,000 viewers in total and a three per cent increase compared to FTA in 2021).
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In Melbourne, audiences were up 30 per cent compared to Round One of 2021, while in Sydney, audiences were up 21 per cent compared to Round One, 2021.
On the field, Friday night's season opener between St Kilda and Richmond at SkyBus Stadium in Frankston set the scene for a strong round of football which featured brilliant passages of play and some stellar individual performances.
AFL General Manager Women's Football Nicole Livingstone expressed her thanks to clubs, players and football fans across the country, and thanked broadcast partners - the Seven Network and Foxtel – for their continued support of the game.
"I want to acknowledge the dedication of everyone in the football community in supporting the 2022 NAB AFL Women's Competition," Ms Livingstone said.
"We are delighted in the strong start to the sixth season of AFLW which has seen high ratings, high scores and great attendances across the country at matches during the opening round.
"To see the standard of footy on display in Round One and emerging talent making an immediate impact on the competition is very exciting for football and highlights the continued progression of the NAB AFLW Competition.
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"We extend our support to players who sustained injuries and we remain committed to continuing to invest in research and implementing best-practice injury prevention programs to support all players.
"Off the field, it is fantastic to see more people are watching AFLW, more supporters attending matches, and more girls and women pulling on the boots to play Australian Football. To the 20,151 supporters who purchased tickets and attended Round One matches, thank you.
"I also want to thank our broadcast partners, the Seven Network and Foxtel, for their ongoing support and commitment to bringing fans from right across the country closer to the game.
"While COVID-19 continues to impact our community, we will continue to be led by governments and health officials and make changes that best manage the current environment, progresses our season and protects the health and safety of those in our game and the wider community.
"It is important to acknowledge and thank all frontline workers across the country for their tireless work during this ongoing pandemic."
Ms Livingstone thanked all clubs, players and the AFLPA, umpires, venues, governments, and broadcasters for the role they each continue to play.
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