It has now been ten years since the Giants entered the AFL and quickly surpassed the other expansion side in the Gold Coast for quality and on-field success.

A big part of that success has been the ability to have large fan base in both Western Sydney as well as Canberra which has been the second home for the Giants for a decade at this point.

This new deal to keep football in Canberra will last 2032 making it 21 years since the club first started playing home games in Canberra.

While the weather isn't always great, who can forget the snow game, the crowds always show up in Canberra - a city that has been starved of high-level sport for a long period.

The partnership will see at least three Giants home games played at Manuka Oval as well as pre-season matches and at least one of the club's AFLW matches.

However, the agreement goes even further than that with more money being invested into the GIANTS Academy in the ACT with the hope of getting more local kids to play the game and get into the pathways.

GIANTS Chief Executive Officer David Matthews thanked the ACT Government for their ongoing support of the GIANTS and Australian Football more broadly: 

"This is a significant announcement and an important partnership for the GIANTS,” Mr Matthews said. 

“The ACT Government and the people of Canberra have been an integral part of our club since our inception and the long-term commitment from both sides signifies our ongoing dedication to the ACT. 

“We thank Chief Minister Barr, the ACT Government and the Canberra community for their ongoing support and for making this such a successful partnership with even greater growth ahead of us.

"Over the past decade, we have seen our ACT membership numbers build considerably while home games at Manuka Oval continue to sell out regularly."

The agreement includes: 

  • At least three AFL Premiership matches at Manuka Oval each year (with an option to purchase a fourth Premiership match annually should it become available) 

  • One pre-season match annually (if pre-season games are scheduled by the AFL) 

  • Up to two AFLW Premiership matches at Manuka Oval per year (one plus another where the premiership schedule allows) 

  • Prominent exposure of the Brand CBR logo on the playing guernsey of both teams for the first time 

  • Expanded opportunities to market Canberra leveraging the GIANTS and AFL profile, particularly into the Sydney market 

  • Enhanced marketing and brand exposure at stadiums, events and free-to-air broadcasts 

  • Enhanced engagement at a local club level by both AFL and AFLW teams.   

With the UC Capitals WNBL side finally coming back to their home court in 2023 as well as the Raiders continuing this agreement is just part of the growing ACT sporting landscape.

With the debate around a potential new stadium closer to Civic and better light rail facilities now being developed, it is clear Canberra is on the way to becoming a world-class city.

The question going forward will be if the ACT deserves its own team rather than sharing one for Sydney. With Tasmania likely to come into the competition there will likely be the 20th team at some point. Could that be Canberra?

Chief Minister of the ACT Government, Andrew Barr MLA, said: 

“Canberra has established a long-term partnership with the GIANTS, and this unique co-located model has been highly successful,” Minister Barr said. 

“The GIANTS are now well established in Canberra with a loyal supporter base including more than 6,400 members based in Canberra and the surrounding region.  

“Regular AFL fixtures at Manuka Oval have already delivered significant economic benefits for the ACT through direct expenditure, tourism and destination marketing. 

“The GIANTS and AFL reach a national audience which provides a significant opportunity to promote Canberra, raise awareness of the city and support the growth of our tourism sector. 

“The ACT Government welcomes the GIANTS’ commitment to Canberra for the coming decade.” 

The 2023 AFL season will see Manuka Oval host the Lions, Bulldogs and Gold Coast in the nation's capital.

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