MEMBERS STATEMENT | AFL GRAND FINAL

Mr Melhem: Finals fever is coming to Melbourne. With the last round over, the Bulldogs are in the eight, and I wish to congratulate the players on a fantastic season and I want to take the opportunity to congratulate The Bont for being awarded the 2019 coach’s award. This is a busy time for Victoria. With over 700 000 attendees over four weeks and 100 000 at the G for the final alone, this is Australia’s best attended sporting event. Beyond the MCG, millions of Australians tune in to the game. In fact in 2016 there were 6.5 million people across Australia that watched the Western Bulldogs defeat the Swans. Grand final weekend is a great time to be a Victorian. With the grand final eve public holiday on the Friday, Victorians get the day off to enjoy the parade or get out of the city for the weekend. Both of these are popular options, with 150 000 people attending the parade in 2015 and an estimated increase to regional Victorian tourism to the tune of $51 million. Facts and figures aside, we have an exciting couple of weeks coming up. To the players: best of luck. To last year’s premiers: remember, footy is Victoria’s game. Let us bring the flag home and let us have a Victorian team win the grand final—and hopefully it is the Dogs. Go Doggies!