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2022 AFL Grand Final ranked the least exciting in flush factor history

Geelong’s dominance over Sydney in Saturday’s AFL Grand Final has been reflected in the 2022 flush factor, with footy fans content to miss some of the action for a toilet break.   

graph showing water use during AFL Grand Final

The game has taken last place on Melbourne Water’s flush factor table.     

The flush factor is a unique way of rating the engagement of footy fans, typically showing the closer the game, the more likely people will hold on until a break in play to visit the loo. It shows the percentage increase in water use from mass toilet flushings at the end of each quarter compared to a normal day (see table and graphs below).  

graph showing flush factor

Through an extensive network of underground pipes and sewers Melbourne Water manages and treats the city’s sewage, ensuring the health of our environment, and communities. 

Melbourne Water’s Water Operations Centre Lead, David White, said with Geelong leading throughout the game, the spikes recorded after each quarter were not very big. 

“The flush factor has stood up as a reliable indicator of the game once again,” Mr White said. 

“It indicated the smallest increase in water flow at the final siren of the past 16 grand finals, with an 8.4 percent change in flow compared to a typical day. Geelong’s 81 point win replaced Richmond’s 89 point thrashing of Greater Western Sydney in 2019 on the bottom of the tally.” 

The Western Bulldogs’ emotional win over Sydney in 2016, which delivered their first AFL premiership since 1954, remains on top of the flush factor tally by a long way, while the nail-biting 2010 Collingwood and St Kilda draw sits comfortably in second place.   

Melbourne Water has been monitoring the flush factor since 2008.  

Grand Final rankings from 2008-2022 based on flush factor
Rank Teams Year Change in flow % at final siren
1 Western Bulldogs def Sydney 2016 101
2 Collingwood and St Kilda draw 2010 50.8
3 Sydney def Hawthorn 2012 38.8
4 West Coast def Collingwood 2018 36.0
5 Geelong def St Kilda 2009  35.0
6 Hawthorn def Geelong  2008 30.0
7 Hawthorn def Fremantle 2013 29.0
8 Richmond def Adelaide 2017 29.0
9 Geelong def Collingwood 2011 28.4
10 Melbourne def Western Bulldogs 2021 27.9
11 Richmond def Geelong  2020 25.5
12 Collingwood def St Kilda 2010-2 17.7
13 Hawthorn def West Coast 2015 16.4
14 Hawthorn def Sydney  2014 15.9
15 Richmond def GWS 2019 13.0
16 Geelong def Sydney 2022 8.4

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