‘Gather Round… A festival of footy’ – The AFL has unveiled the name of the inaugural extra round set for 2023

The AFL has unveiled the name of the inaugural extra round set for April 2023 in South Australia.

‘Gather Round… A festival of footy’ is the name of the weekend that will see Adelaide host all nine games over one weekend.

Reported by 7 News’ Mitch Cleary on Wednesday, the league is gearing up for this concept installed by outgoing CEO Gillon McLachlan.

The weekend stretching from Thursdsay April, 13 to Sunday April 16 was confirmed by McLachlan and SA Premier Peter Malinauskas in October, with the famous Adelaide Oval to hold six of the nine matches.

The remaining three games have yet to be decided upon with the Barossa Valley and Norwood venues flagged as potential settings to host.

Following two COVID-19 ravaged seasons and a lack of travel for sport, McLachlan believes that his home state of South Australia is deserving to host the inaugural ‘Gather Round’.

“Over the pandemic years, South Australia played a huge role in the survival of our game, so we’re pleased to be able to bring what I think is going to be a legacy event for our code to start here in Adelaide and South Australia,” McLachlan said in October.

“We are looking forward to not only bringing nine great matches for premiership points to South Australia, but also a party-like atmosphere, filled with fan activations, family-friendly events, music, entertainment, community engagement, all designed to bring the city to life over the four days.”

The concept of the ‘Gather Round’ was inspired by the NRL, who dubbed it as their ‘Magic Round’.

The fixture has yet to be released but round one is confirmed with Richmond and Carlton doing battle to open the season on Thursday, March 16 at the MCG.

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