AAP AFL

Roos, Hawks still committed to Tasmania

By AAP Newswire

North Melbourne chairman Ben Buckley has reaffirmed his club's commitment to Tasmania amidst growing support for the state to be granted its own AFL team.

Buckley confirmed his club's stance on the same day Hawthorn president Jeff Kennett reiterated the Hawks' support for Tasmanian football.

Broadcasting legend Tim Lane, who has long been a strong advocate for a new AFL side based in his home state, recently renewed his push in a submission to a Tasmanian parliamentary committee.

Buckley, however, remains confident the current two-team model with Hawthorn is the best solution for all parties.

But he says the Roos wouldn't stand in the way if a change of policy from AFL headquarters led to the introduction of new a stand-alone team in Tasmania in the future.

"We've got two more years of an agreement to play four games (a season)," Buckley said.

"And we think there are some additional things we can do with Tasmania to bring Tassie football back to a more prominent position on the national landscape.

"Working with them on participation, development and elite player pathways - we have made a lot of investment in that area and will continue to in partnership with the AFL and AFL Tasmania.

"But ultimately it's a decision for the AFL as to whether they want to support a licence to be in Tasmania.

"If that was their decision we wouldn't stand in the way but we've made a commitment to play four games and we don't intend to play more."

Lane was critical of both clubs, who receive significant taxpayer funds, in his submission to the committee investigating the AFL's impact on the state and the potential for a stand-alone club.

The issue will gather further momentum when the Tasmanian Taskforce, headed by Brett Godfrey, hands down its report into the viability of a new team.

"Based on experiences in my former political life, I have found that those who undertake such inquiries rarely then have the responsibility of delivering its findings," Kennett said in an open letter to members.

"Interesting times ahead.

"We at Hawthorn have close to 10,000 paid up members in Tassie.

"Hawthorn has always, and will always support, that which is good for Tasmanian football."