Tigers honoured as O'Neal takes AFL flag

Peggy O'Neal has enjoyed another slice of AFL history, as the first woman to accept the premiership flag.

The handover of the flag is one of the rituals of the AFL season launch and the Richmond president took possession at Wednesday night's Melbourne function from league chairman Richard Goyder.

The Tigers' stunning grand final triumph last September was the centrepiece of the season launch, with AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan trumpeting the hope their success gives to every other club.

McLachlan said their improbable rise from 13th in 2016 to the flag was a case of "blowing the doors right off the building".

"The Tigers provided the 'you cannot make this up' ending (to last season) and delivered hope to all clubs that they can make it too," McLachlan added.

McLachlan also congratulated O'Neal and her board for holding their nerve after the 2016 season, when coach Damien Hardwick was under massive pressure to hold his job.

He said the Tigers had shown every other club what might be possible.

"Every club can see their path to the premiership," he said.

"Every fan has a right to hope."

O'Neal said her most cherished memory from the premiership is the joy of their long-suffering fans.

"While the on-field highlights are still upper most in our minds, it was really the tears and smiles of the supporters that were the most memorable," she said.

"This was a win, as our coach said, for the Tiger army.

"It was also a premiership embraced by the entire suburb - those who participated in the Swan St grand final after party would be aware of that."

The evening is normally a slick event production, but it was held up for several minutes because of a video problem.

The issue was fixed in time for the highlight of the evening - fllm maker Peter Dickson's annual mini documentary on the previous season's grand final.