NITV and the AFL kick off their new partnership and premiere program, Yokayi Footy

Source: NITV

A new take on the traditional panel show champions young, diverse players and perspectives.

NITV and the AFL are proud to announce the launch of Yokayi Footy – an exciting new take on the traditional football panel show. The program marks the beginning of a partnership between NITV and the AFL, ahead of the 2020 Toyota AFL Premiership Season.

Premiering on 18 March, and hosted by former Adelaide, Sydney and Collingwood player Tony Armstrong, AFLW advocate and youth pioneer Bianca Hunt, and former triple premiership Brisbane Lions and Australian Indigenous Team of the Century player Darryl White, Yokayi Footy will bring AFL debate and conversation to the table through a unique and youthful Indigenous lens.

The name Yokayi, a Noongar phrase meaning ‘a shout of victory’, highlights the importance of culture and community, both of which are core aspects of the program. Yokayi Footy will film between its Melbourne studio and on country, with segments exploring participation around Australia and the untold stories from communities.

In addition to catching up on the AFL news of the week, the program will incorporate interactive elements in the form of ‘The Deadliest’ competition. Taking place as knockout rounds via social media, fans will be given the ability to vote for their favourite Indigenous player. Each week, the results will be discussed by the panel, until the winner is announced in the lead up to the Sir Doug Nichols Round.

NITV AFL Correspondent, Gilbert 'Gilly' McAdam will also play a key part in the program, reporting from communities as well as hosting several regional AFL games on NITV throughout the season.

Together, NITV and the AFL are committed to more viewing options across some of the biggest TV and digital platforms in the country in order to amplify the AFL stories that matter most to Indigenous communities.

Yokayi Footy will be broadcast on NITV, SBS Viceland, as well as catch up services available on SBS On Demand, making the program accessible to all AFL fans no matter their location. The first episode will also be streamed on NITV’s Facebook page.

NITV Channel Manager, Tanya Orman, said: “Yokayi Footy will continue NITV’s strong legacy of covering AFL, and enable us to reach new audiences through a different lens, and in particular engage the thousands of young people who play and follow the game in communities across the country.

“The love and importance of football to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and the positive impact it has in communities around Australia, inspired us to create a program that celebrates the achievements of Indigenous players, as well as telling the stories of the game, in a way that hasn’t been done before.

“We’re also thrilled that this partnership has created employment opportunities within the Indigenous broadcast sector, and that Karla Hart, a proud Noongar woman, will be joining us as Executive Producer.

“NITV are thrilled to be working so closely with the AFL and are excited for the positive impact the two organisations can make together.”

Darren Birch, AFL General Manager - Growth, Digital and Audiences, said the new partnership recognises the incredible contribution to the game from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, and the new partnership provides an opportunity for these voices to be better represented in our game.

“Indigenous players, past and present, have given so much to our game, and we are proud to create a new platform in partnership with NITV to champion these players and their stories. Yokayi Footy is modern. It’s authentic. And it’s bringing these important perspectives of our game to fans.

“We are honoured to work in partnership with the NITV family and their leadership.”

In another win for AFL fans, The Colour of Your Jumper will be broadcast on free-to-air TV for the first time, with NITV airing the new season on Tuesday nights at 9.30pm. Hosted by Shelley Ware, Mathew Stokes and Andrew Krakouer, the program tackles both the serious and light-hearted issues facing Indigenous players in the AFL.

Catch Yokayi Footy from Wednesday 18 March at 8pm on NITV, Friday’s at 3pm on SBS Viceland and catch up on SBS On Demand, and the AFL Live app.

Join the conversation on social media #YokayiFooty


For a PDF version of this media release, click here.