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Liddle refutes safety claim

AFLW Highlights | Carlton v Brisbane The Blues and Lions clash in Round 3 of the AFLW.

CARLTON CEO Cain Liddle concedes Ikon Park's lighting needs to be upgraded, but refutes suggestions player safety was an issue during the Blues' AFLW clash with Brisbane on Saturday night.

Lions coach Craig Starcevich described the lighting at Ikon Park as "terrible" after Saturday night's game, saying: "I'm just thinking 'God, is this OK safety-wise for the players?'".

Liddle told SEN radio Carlton had opened talks to improve the lighting at its home ground, acknowledging that spectators had had difficulty following the play on Saturday night.

"If you were at the ground watching that game there certainly were patches of the ground that were difficult to see. Grounds such as Ikon Park and Whitten Oval, for a long period of time now, there really hasn't been significant content to warrant investment," Liddle said.

"AFLW, and women's football more generally, has come on so strong and so quickly that now we've got councils, clubs and the AFL all scrambling to sort of retro-fit facilities and I think there's an acknowledgement that we need to fix that issue and fix it quickly.

19,852 people packed into Ikon Park in Round 1. (Photo: AFL Photos)

"And we're deep in conversations with the right stakeholders to be able to fix that over time.

"I will challenge the insinuation there was a safety issue. We don't agree with that.

"I had a chat with Tayla Harris yesterday and her view was as a player she hadn't even noticed any issues with the lighting, but her parents who were there did say there were parts of the ground that were difficult to see.

"From a safety perspective, (there are) no problems. Is it (an) elite, high-performance (environment), probably not, and we're in the process of looking to rectify that."

AFLW CEO Nicole Livingstone said on Sunday the League had made submissions to the Victorian government to upgrade Ikon Park's lighting, but would consider rescheduling upcoming night games at Ikon Park if concerns were raised by AFLW coaches.

"Because we are so immature in terms of our development we are relying on the coaches to come to the table and help us as well. If that is something that comes up this week, we may look at fixturing," Livingstone told Channel Nine.