The AFL is in the process of transporting all of the hallowed turf from Binnak Park to the Gabba in time for Saturday’s Grand Final. The complicated transplant officially commenced on Monday at the Watsonia North oval, with the treasured surface arriving in Brisbane late last night and expected to be sown in today.

The move follows public ridicule last week when it was announced that a small portion of the MCG was being relocated to the Gabba in an ultimately failed attempt to warm the hearts of us sad sad Victorians. After that sponsored publicity stunt seemed to backfire, and was widely mocked on social media, the AFL decided to double down and go one step better.

Taking a very literal approach to their much-publicised commitment to “grassroots” footy, the AFL concocted the plan during a lengthy poolside luncheon last week in their Gold Coast hub. When they heard Binnak Park was being dug up anyway as part of a redevelopment, the turf’s fate was sealed. According to a league insider, “It was all very serendipitous. Truth be told, we mostly pay lip service to grassroots footy, but this is our chance to give back to the community that we take so much from. And Binnak Park is about as far from the bright lights of the AFL that you can get. Dog turds on the grass and all.”

Presumably not learning from their failed attempt at turf management when opening the Docklands stadium back in 2000, the AFL have thrown caution to the wind by giving the new turf less than two days to settle in its new home, before it hosts the biggest game of the year. Some reports coming out of Queensland this morning suggest that Richmond are particularly concerned about the new surface, with some players fearing their beloved diving acts will be hampered by loose footing on the ground.

More to come.