The 2019 AFL National Inclusion Carnival kicks off this week at Blacktown International Sportspark, New South Wales from July 15-20.
The AFL National Inclusion Carnival brings together male footballers aged 16 years and over with an intellectual disability from across the country to take part in a round-robin carnival.
Victoria Metro and Country will represent the state in the national carnival.
Throughout the week, players will take part in a number of educational sessions and compete in a Lightning Carnival and a three-match round robin series in their respective Divisions, before playing finals under lights at Blacktown International Sportspark on Friday July 19.
For the first time ever, a female super clinic will feature at the National Inclusion Carnival, to support the growth of the sport in the female inclusion space.
For many years, players with intellectual disabilities from Victoria and South Australia competed in an annual State of Origin match. In 2013, players from NSW/ACT joined the carnival and Victoria was split into two teams (Metro and Country) to form a four-team competition.
Victoria Country was victorious in the 2014 carnival which also saw the introduction of teams from Queensland and Tasmania. Western Australia participated in the carnival for the first time in 2015 where Victoria Metro claimed the honours. Victoria Metro then went on to claim the next three Division 1 titles, defeating South Australia in Melbourne in 2016, NSW/ACT on the Gold Coast in 2017 and most recently South Australia in Tasmania in 2018.
Two premiership titles have been secured in the Division 2 competition since it first began in 2017, with South Australia defeating Tasmania in 2017 and Western Australia defeating Northern Territory in 2018.
Follow the action throughout the Carnival online using the hashtag #AFLInclusion or CLICK HERE for fixtures and results.
2019 AFL National Inclusion Carnival Itinerary:
Monday July 15
- Opening Ceremony
Tuesday July 16
- Lightning Carnival (Part One) Blacktown International Sportspark
- Female Super Clinic
- Education sessions
Wednesday July 17
- Lightning Carnival (Part Two) Blacktown International Sportspark
- Education sessions
Thursday July 18
- Division One and Two matches (Rounds 1 and 2)
Friday July 19
- Division One and Two matches (Round 3)
- Division One & Two Finals (3pm-8pm)
- Division Two Grand Final at Blacktown International Sportspark at 5:40pm AEST (on-field presentation to follow)
- Division One Grand Final at Blacktown International Sportspark at 7pm AEST (on-field presentation to follow)
Saturday July 20
- AFL National Inclusion Carnival Closing Ceremony
- Team Best & Fairest Awards