Australia's Channel Seven is looking at how it will cover the games once the season resumes. They have announced that commentators would do their work remotely from a studio rather than at the grounds. However, there could still be broadcast team members, such as boundary riders, at the grounds. One member of the that team, Brian Taylor would still conduct postgame interviews with players and do so remotely. According to Seven boss Lewis Martin, they are looking at "... COVID versions of 'Roaming Brian'.''
After the conclusion of the opening, so far only, round of the season a number of SEN listeners called in saying they missed the roar of the crowds and suggested artificial crowd noise. Seven has been trialing the use of artificial crowd noise but Martin said the network " ... would not innovate 'for innovation's sake' ... there's so many ideas. We're certainly looking at a number of innovations." The use of artificial crowd noise was tried for the GWS vs Geelong match. Martin did not think viewers would miss crowd noise if a game scores were tight.
For the most part, the division of games between networks is still up in the air. Seven will retain their traditional Friday and Saturday nights, as well as the Sunday mid-afternoon (usually 3:20 AEST [1:20 AM US EDT]) games. Thursday night games have usually been shared between Seven and Foxtel but it is still unknown how any Wednesday nights would be divided. Games on Wednesdays is still speculative, depending on whether or not the AFL needs to compress the season further.
Martin said Seven preferred larger stadiums such as the MCG and Marvel over smaller suburban grounds but that it was still up to the AFL and the authorities. He was also unsure about the broadcast teams for Friday nights as Seven waits for the league to announce firm schedules to appoint their teams. Nor is he sure as to how many games Seven will get under the revised schedules.
Under normal circumstances, according the broadcast agreement, Seven had three-and-a half-games per round, and Foxtel had five-and-a-half. The "half" included a mix of Thursdays and public holiday games such as Anzac Day and the Queen's Birthday. The loss of those and the Easter Monday matches requires revised arrangements for the broadcasters.
Source: theage.com.au, Seven Network
Article last changed on Sunday, May 10, 2020 - 2:26 PM EDT