AFL: Ballarat wins over Western Bulldogs and Cairns is out

The Western Bulldogs' ties with Ballarat have been further strengthened with the reigning premier ditching Cairns as an alternative venue for home games.

Bulldogs chief executive officer Gary Kent says Ballarat will now be their sole focus for home games away from Etihad Stadium.

Kent told on Wednesday that the Western Bulldogs would not seeking home games in far north Queensland in the future.

They have played one game a year in Cairns for the past three seasons.

"Having two games in Ballarat and trying to keep a home game in Cairns will be quite difficult," Kent said.

The Western Bulldogs, City of Ballarat and state government have a deal which locks the Bulldogs into playing two games a year at Mars Stadium until the 2021 season.

Kent said if the Ballarat venture continued to thrive, he hoped the ground would be developed even further to accommodate a much larger crowd than the near-capacity attendance of 10,087 against Port Adelaide on Saturday.

“I think everyone saw what sort of demand there is, and we've got 47,000 members who all weren't able to get in the stadium, so we'd be very much supportive of expanding, and the state government will be too eventually," he said.

"The City of Ballarat sponsorship is significant, as well as making that our heartland, in terms of fans and members for the club.

"The city and the people of Ballarat have really got behind us. You could see that from the red, white and blue throughout the grandstand and on the hill.

"We're really delighted with the first game, and what it's going to do in terms of commercial returns over time for us," he said.

Given the demand from their membership base for maximum tickets to a Ballarat game, the Bulldogs are looking to play two interstate teams at Mars Stadium next year.

Kent said the club would continue to lobby to play one South Australian side owing to the venue being an eight-hour drive from Adelaide, and a second fixture against another non-Victorian club.

He said players and football department had been delighted with the facilities and playing surface.

"It very much (did remind me of the atmosphere at the Whitten Oval), and we love playing at Etihad Stadium, and play great football there, but that small model boutique venue reminded me very much of the old days," Kent said.