THE REMAINING two rounds of the 2020 NAB AFLW season have been scrapped as a response to the COVID-19 crisis, with an extended eight-team finals series to kick off this weekend.
AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan confirmed the move on Wednesday night, saying a full fixture will be released on Thursday morning.
A three-week finals series was previously planned, with the top three sides in each conference qualifying, but while the length of this new finals series is yet to be confirmed, we will see an extra two sides take to the field.
The sides to qualify from Conference A are North Melbourne, GWS, Brisbane and Gold Coast, while Conference B teams are Fremantle, Carlton, Melbourne and Collingwood.
This was the AFLW playing group's preferred structure – as nominated in a survey conducted by the AFLPA on Monday night – to compensate for the final two rounds being cut.
It will be Gold Coast's first ever finals series as a club, with the AFL side having so far failed to finish in the top eight.
Adelaide's very outside chance of defending its premiership is over, while Geelong, the Western Bulldogs, St Kilda, Richmond and West Coast will also miss out on finals.
"We would like to acknowledge and pay tribute to all 14 clubs and players in our competition, who have worked incredibly hard across the season. They should be extremely proud of what they have achieved," AFL head of women's football Nicole Livingstone said.
"Particularly to the clubs that will be concluding their 2020 season; Adelaide Crows, Geelong, Western Bulldogs, and new comers West Coast Eagles, St Kilda and Richmond, thank you for your care and commitment to AFLW, your programs and your players.
"We look forward to the next three weeks of finals, and wish all eight teams the best of luck."