League Archive

SANFL Statement: AFL medical substitute rule

By SANFL Media

SANFL can confirm it will not be introducing the AFL’s new 23rd player Medical Substitute Rule in the SANFL Statewide Super League following a decision today by the South Australian Football Commission.

The Commission endorsed SANFL’s recommendation not to adopt the new AFL rule, noting that SANFL had increased its number of interchange players in 2019 from three to four, ensuring sufficient players on the bench for up to 75 rotations and to replace injured players unable to participate any further in a match.

The Commission also maintained the current rule for AFL-listed players, with the AFL medical substitute player not permitted to play in the SANFL State League on the same weekend if they are activated during the AFL match. This will be regardless of the amount of time the player has on the field in an AFL match.

While the AFL announced that the medical substitute player could play State League football the same weekend, regardless of whether they are activated or not, SANFL’s current rule does not allow this.

However, should the medical substitute player not participate in the AFL match, they will be considered as an emergency player and therefore permitted to play in the SANFL that same weekend.


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