THE controversial last-disposal out-of-bounds rule is set to be introduced in the AFLW next year.
Many believe the rule should be used in the AFL to keep the game moving and limit congestion following its success in the SANFL.
South Australia’s state league introduced the rule, which leads to a free against the side that kicks or handballs the ball over the boundary, in 2016.
It has generally been well received with two seasons of data showing games were more free flowing which turned into improved scoring.
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The AFL Commission is expected to tick off the rule change for the women’s league this week.
There has been a reluctance to go with the ‘last possession’ rule in the AFL with the league’s football department preferring to maintain a strict interpretation of the deliberate out of bounds rule.
This was also to preserve the ruck and stoppage work from boundary throw-ins.
By introducing it in the women’s game, it gives the decision-makers another body of evidence to consider.
While the AFLW was a runaway success in its debut season, the lack of scoring and congestion was an issue despite the 16-a-side format.
Former Geelong champion Garry Hocking, who coached South Adelaide this year, said during the year the SANFL rule not only made it easier to determine free kicks but ensured matches were more free flowing.
“You get less stoppages and you get more scoring, and I think that’s what people want to go see – they want to see goals kicked and the play continue,” Hocking said.