2023 Toyota AFL National Inclusion Carnival arrives in Queensland

Queensland will host the 2023 Toyota AFL National Inclusion Carnival from this Sunday.

The carnival will be held at Springfield Central Sports Complex from October 8 – 12, and at Brighton Homes Arena in Springfield for the final day on October 13.

The annual carnival for the most talented male footballers with an intellectual disability will again see representative teams from eight States and Territories compete, with the teams selected from the best talent from their local inclusion leagues and academies.
Delivered by the AFL and AFL Queensland and with APM Employment Services coming on board as supporting partner, the Sunshine State will host 72 matches with more than 160 athletes and support staff set to participate.
The event returned in 2022 after a two-year hiatus because of the pandemic and was a great success in the Barossa Valley. Hosts South Australia took out its first division one title while Queensland was triumphant in division two. 
First played in 2014, the 2023 tournament will be the second time the event has been held in Queensland after the 2017 edition was staged on the Gold Coast.

Head of AFL Queensland Trisha Squires said it’s exciting for Queensland to be able to host the carnival for the second time.

“We’re proud to be able to bring the Toyota AFL National Inclusion Carnival to the Sunshine State and promote the inclusivity of our game,” she said.

“Having the opportunity to hold the carnival at the state-of-the-art Brighton Homes Arena in Springfield as well as the Springfield Central Sports Complex is a huge boost for inclusion football in Queensland.

“We look forward to welcoming supporters from across the country next week, and be able to showcase what footy in Queensland is all about.”
AFL Executive General Manager Game Development, Rob Auld, said: “The Toyota AFL National Inclusion Carnival is a fantastic example of how the game brings together communities and people from all walks of life, including footballers with intellectual disabilities.
“Australian football is a game for all and what a thrill it will be for players and support staff involved to be part of an event where they can represent their state or territory in a national carnival.
“In 2022 the carnival had a profoundly positive impact on so many involved, particularly after not happening for two years because of the pandemic, which makes it very exciting to be able to build on that momentum in 2023.
“We know Queensland will do a fantastic job hosting, with outstanding venues to be used. Brisbane will be a great place to be in early October when hundreds of people from across the country come together for the carnival.
“Thank you to the AFL’s premier partner Toyota Australia for their continued support of so many aspects of the game, including the disability inclusion space. Toyota’s backing helps to ensure many people are presented with wonderful opportunities to experience Australian football.”

Ipswich Mayor Teresa Harding said: “Ipswich City Council is proud to provide financial and in-kind support for the AFL’s National Inclusion Carnival as we are committed to supporting initiatives and partnerships that encourage participation in community life, celebrate diversity and contribute to a happy, healthy and active community.

“Ipswich is a sports mad city, and this council understands the transformative effect participating in sport can have on physical and mental wellbeing.

“Brighton Homes Arena in Ipswich is an $80 million world-class AFL stadium and the only venue in Australia that provides elite training and recovery facilities for both professional men’s and women’s AFL, so together with the Springfield Central Sports Complex it is the perfect venue for the AFL’s National Inclusion Carnival.”

Toyota Australia Chief Marketing Officer, Vin Naidoo said Toyota was proud to support the AFL’s National Inclusion Carnival for another year running.
“Toyota has been a long-standing partner of the AFL, spanning two decades and it’s fantastic to see programs such as the National Inclusion Carnival flourish,” Mr Naidoo said.
“We continue to show our support through all levels of sport, from grassroots to the elite and encourage all members of the community to get involved.”
Structure of the carnival: Eight teams (12-a-side) will play a lightning carnival format over the first two days, then based on results, the top four teams go into Division 1 and the bottom four teams go into Division 2. Teams play three matches against opponents in their division, before the top two teams play off in the Grand Final.
The full schedule and playing venues for the 2023 carnival will be released closer to the event.
The first National Inclusion Carnival was played in 2014 in Melbourne. Below is a history of host cities and previous winners:


Host city

Div 1 winner

Div 2 winner


Melbourne, VIC

Vic Country


Melbourne, VIC

Vic Metro


Melbourne, VIC

Vic Metro


Gold Coast, Qld

Vic Metro

South Australia


Launceston, Tas

Vic Metro

Western Australia


Blacktown, NSW

Northern Territory


2020 & 2021

Not held




Angaston, SA

South Australia



Our Supporters