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AFL Grand Final controversy

Saturday's AFL Grand Final was a marvellous conclusion to the 2010 season. Collingwood and St Kilda fought out a tremendous battle which went right down to the wire, so close in fact that it ended up in a draw, Collingwood 9.14 (68) to St Kilda 10.8 (68). Once a year followers probably expected the match to go into extra time to decide a result on the day, but they were wrong. Australia's native sport is unique in that a drawn Grand Final goes to a full replay the following week. The last time it happened was 1977, before most other sports found ways to break the deadlock. The FA Cup Final for example went to replays as recently as 1993, but the round-ball game is far more prone to stalemates. American sports always go to extra-time so there's no surprise there. The rugby codes now go to extra time, but not sure how long that has been the case.

Only three times in 115 years has the AFL (or VFL) Grand Final ended in a draw and required a replay. Some have argued it's about finding the better team on the day - which is exactly the reason why I think it should go to a replay - there was no better team, so why use a silly five-minute tiebreaker system?

I love the fact the AFL is different and is going to a full replay next weekend. I'd be gutted if I'd flown all the way back from London to watch my favourite team and then have to find a way to buy another ticket, but c'est la vie.

For betting purposes, all match betting on the h2h result would have been paid as a dead-heat. Margin betting (such as Collingwood 1-39) would always include the draw as an option so you lose, and bets on the 'Grand Final Winner' would be carried over to this week.

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