Doorstop Interview, Hobart, TAS

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The Hon Richard Marles MP

Deputy Prime Minister

Minister for Defence

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02 6277 7800

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3 May 2023

SUBJECTS: Tasmanian AFL team announcement.

RICHARD MARLES, ACTING PRIME MINISTER: Well Jeremy and Gill, it is a tremendous honour and joy to be standing here today. This is a very, very historic day, because today we resolve unfinished business in Australia's national footy project. For decades, the children of this state have been writing their part in Australia’s footy story. From a concussed Peter Hudson valiantly trying to break the goal kicking record in the 1971 Grand Final, to Royce Hart taking a screamer in the last few minutes to deprive Geelong of the 1967 flag; to Darrel Baldock leading St Kilda to the mountaintop for their one and only visit; to John Devine who starred in that 63 grand final which gave us a flag. And more recently, the Riewoldts, the Lynchs, the Richardsons, and indeed, the most recent Tasmanian to have an AFL Premiership medal, Jake Kolodjashnij. And in the women's game as well, Nicole Bresnehan, who has been starring for North Melbourne.

But until now, that story has largely been written on the mainland. Tasmania's best have had to cross Bass Strait in order to show the country what they can do. But all of that changes today. All of that changes with the announcement of Tasmania being the 19th team in our competition. And they will have the great honour of standing alongside the other teams in the competition to be put to the sword by Geelong at the highest level. And we very much look forward to that. The Federal Government is really proud to be a part of this, a $240 million commitment to the redevelopment of Macquarie Point, the heart of which will be this new stadium. And I just want to thank everyone who has been involved in this and bringing this to the wonderful moment that is today. The Tasmanian Government and Jeremy, they deserve a lot of credit for bringing this here, and also to Gill and the AFL. This is making right what needs to be in terms of a proud footy state of Tasmania taking its place within our national competition. The Federal Government is proud to play its part in working with the AFL and with the Tasmanian Government in making this a reality, and I really want to thank everyone for the role that they have played in getting us to this point today. Thank you.


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