SA Football Video Archive and Trading Post

Preserving South Australian Football Video

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***NEW*** "That Grand Final Feeling"

Contains this complete documentary from 1985. The most complete and in depth exploration of SA grand final history ever completed.

1947 WEST ADELAIDE 10-15 (75) defeated Norwood 5-15 (45)

Norwood started this match warm favourites, having won 5 more games than West in the minor round and finishing minor premiers. West lost 6 of its first 9 minor round games but won 9 of their last 10 to make it to the grand final. West also lost 2 key players, including star centre half-forward Jack Broadstock to suspension and sustained a number of injuries in a bruising Preliminary final win over Port.

The game was played in wet conditions and West used its superior pace to full effect right from the outset, kicking 2 goals 5 to Norwood's 4 points in the first quarter. By 3 quarter time West lead by 18 points, a considerable margin in the conditions. Norwood had thrown everything at West in the third term but had little to show on the scoreboard and many considered the game over before the start of the last term. And so it proved with West kicking 3 goals to 1 in the last term to win by 30 points.

Colin Smith, playing with a badly bruised and swollen ankle was the hero for West and kicked 2 goals, including one from a a 50 yard drop kick from the boundary line. At the siren there was great jubilation and the West players chaired their captian Taylor, and coach Smith from the ground amid rousing cheers.

Source: Adelaide Advertiser, 6/10/1947.

 

1980's TV segment featuring Peter Marker interviewing Jack Oatey and Fos Williams:

1949 NORTH ADELAIDE 13-17 (85) d West Torrens 9-18 (72)

In this game the luck of the toss of the coin played a big part in the game as North had two quarters with a hot, strong north-westerly wind whereas Torrens only had one before it dropped to a calm in the final term.

At one stage in the third quarter Torrens were one point ahead but four stright goals to the Roosters put them on the road to a comfortable win.

Jeff Pash, playing his last game, was best player for North.

The win meant legendary full-forward Ken Farmer tasted the ultimate success in his first year as non-playing coach of the Roosters.

Source: Whimpress, S, 1983, The South Australian Football History, SANFL, Netley SA.

Silent Footage:

1950 NORWOOD 15-16 (106) defeated Glenelg 8-11 (59)

35 years after this match Glenelg's Stan Wickham was to recall: "It was all over in 10 seconds. Marriott to Oaty to Olds to Dalwood - I'm still straightening my jockstrap out and all this had happened - it was beautiful... we were shellshocked."

The Bay's first grand final since 1934 did not start well for them as Norwood went on to kick 7.5 to 2.2 in the first term. Norwood full-back Ron Reimann managed to restrict champion full-forward Churchett to just 1.3 for the match. Champion rover and Norwood playing coach Robert Oatey stationed himslef a kick behind the play as Glenelg made a second quarter charge and he stopped many promising attacking moves by the Tigers. Oatey also had his men successfully execute a plan to keep Glenelg's attacking full-back Ray Hunt out of the play, smothering Glenelg's run from defence.

In the end, it was Norwood who prevailed in the wet conditions, running out victors by 47 points.

Norwood celebrated what was to be its last premiership for 25 years. For Glenelg it would be another 2 grand final losses and 23 years before they were to finally achieve their second flag. 

Source: Cornwall, P, Wood, J, 1999, The Pride of the BayGraphic Print Group, Richmond SA.

Silent Footage:

1954 PORT ADELAIDE 11-13 (79) defeated West Adelaide 10-16 (76)

Of the four grand final clashes between West and Port in the 50's none was more stirring or sensational than this grand final.

A massive fight broke out at half-time. It started when West captain Brian Faehse dropped Port centreman Boyd as he marked just seconds before half-time. The siren was drowned out by the roars of the crowd as players converged on the scene. Several minutes elapsed before the umpires were able to seperate the fighting players. West players and officials were attacked as they made their way to the dressing rooms behind the stands. One spectator swung a punch at Faehse, missed, and was promptly flattened by another spectator. West coach Laurie Cahill dodged a punch from another assialant, who was quickly set upon by a former West player in the crowd and knocked to the ground with his eyebrow split. West room steward Johnny McCracken had 3 teeeth broken when he was king hit as he walked to the rooms with his arm on the shoulder of Port captain-coach Fos Williams.

West, who had out-played Port in the first half to lead by 4 goals, was beaten by 3 points after a shot by rover Jim Wright hit a goalpost in the last 2 minutes of play.

Tempers were at a trigger-touch on the resumption of play and 3 players were reported for second-half incidents. West full-back Doug Thomas was reported for kicking and Port centre half-back Roger Clift and West ruckman Fred A'Court were charged with striking. At a subsequent league meeting the chairman of the West Club (Mr. Jack Simmons) claimed that the half-time incident had cost West the premiership.

Source: Whimpress, S, 1983, The South Australian Football History, SANFL, Netley SA.

1980's TV segment, Geoff Motley and Fos Willimas interviewed by Peter Marker:

1958 PORT ADELAIDE 14-10 (94) d West Adelaide 14.8 (92)

The grand final will go down in history as one of the most exciting, and whoever lost the match were unlucky, as right up to the last few seconds of the match it was anybody's title.

At three-quarter time West had a handy 10-point lead, and the last quarter started off at a sizzling pace. Port picked up the leeway, and with a couple of minutes to go, and with West trailing by 3 points, Richardson (West) shot for goal, but just as it looked as though he had raised a 6 pointer, the ball veered and hit the post. Then with seconds to go McGregor pulled down the mark out on an acute angle and quickly passed it to Brown, who was straight in front, but some 50 yards out. Unfortunately for Wests, this kick did not go the distance, and the game had been won.

Fos Williams, after taking the Magpies to their fifth title in a row, announced his retirement, and after darkness had fallen on the Adelaide Oval someone unknown chopped down the goalpost that had offended by getting in the way of what should have been West's winning goal.

Source: Gunton, E, 1960,  S.A Football Flashback, Adelaide SA.

Newsreel Highlights:

1980's TV segment; Peter Marker gives overview of the game and then interviews Neil Kerley re missing goal post:

1959 PORT ADELAIDE 13-9 (87) defeated West 11-11 (77)

In beating West Adelaide by 10 points in the 1959 grand final before a crowd of 48,890, Port set an Australian record of 6 successive premierships.

In light rain Port, with a dominating ruck and Motley in control at Centre and Gill heading a tight defence, virtually won the premiership in the first quarter when it kicked 5.1 to 1.5. The game looked all over at half time when Port lead by 6 goals.

Despite its big half time deficit West had chances to win, but too often indulged in foolish short passing and rash handball within kicking distance of goal. However, this style was the reason West were final contenders but against the hard hitting close checking Port there left little room for error.

Few coaches boast of a premiership in the first year and credit was lauded upon Geoff Motley for his excellent year and match winning effort at centre in this grand final.

Cahill goaled early in the last quarter to put Port 28 points in the lead. West rallied then and Port immediately went on the defensive playing the boundaries. With both sides almost exhausted West made its final bid as Chenoweth goaled twice from half forward to put West only nine points down with two minutes to play. Port hung on desperately to win by 10 points.

Source: S.A Football Budget, 29/9/73.

Newsreel Highlights:

1980's TV interview with Neil Kerley and Geoff Motley re 1959 grand final:

1960 NORTH ADELAIDE 14-11 (95) defeated Norwood 13-12 (90)

North won the 1960 Premiership when it defeated Norwood by five points in a match of crises which kept a crowd of 54,162 pent up with excitement.

It was North's first premiership since 1952 and the game was a repetition of the three previous struggles of that season when the biggest margin was six points.

The match was played under perfect conditions and during the course of the match there were six lead changes. The biggest margin between the two were Norwood's 13-point lead in the first quarter and North’s' 16-point break in the second.

Tribute was paid to North coach Jack McCarthy who transformed North into a speedy, power-packed, aggressive combination which asked for no quarter and gave none.

With only four points separating both sides at three quarter the stage was set for a thriller. Highlights were two magnificent goals - one a dropkick on the run by Barbary and a long screw punt by John Vickers. Norwood hit the lead with goals from Lill and Vivian but North steadied and rallied to score and take out the title by five points.

Source: S.A Football Budget, 29/9/1973.

Silent Footage:

1961 WEST ADELAIDE 16-13 (109) defeated Norwood 11-7 (73)

After many near misses in the 1950's, West broke through for thier first premiership in 14 years in the hottest grand final on record. The game is known as the "turkish bath" grand final. The temperature climbed to 35 degrees halfway through the first quarter and it was estimated to have reached 44 degrees in the sun.

West downed Norwood, who had battled their way through from the first semi-final, by 36 points in a game which had players staggering from exhaustion in the last quarter.Norwood defender Ron Kneebone, one of the strongest players in the game, presented a pathetic sight when his knees buckled under him as he chased a ball in the back pocket during the last quarter. West's Neil Kerley, in his first season as captain-coach of the club, was exhausted and speechless for some time after the game.

The weather was not the only hot factor about the game. Tempers flared often, punches were thrown, but there were no reports. The triumph was to be West's last premiership until 1983.

Source: Whimpress, S, 1983, The South Australian Football History, SANFL, Netley SA.

 

Includes training, interviews with both coaches, newsreel highlights, interview with Kerley and Killegew years later:

1962 PORT ADELAIDE 8-10 (58) defeated West Adelaide 7-13 (55)

 A tense crowd of 43,567 saw Port beat West by three points to win the 1962 grand final. It was Port's seventh premiership in nine years. It completed the season with only two losses in 21 games.

An indication of the tremendous struggle was shown in the six lead changes when the biggest margin at any stage was Port's 10-point lead in the third quarter. For most of the game there were big time lapses between goals and, whenever one side threatened to break away, it was quickly and ferociously dragged back.

Despite the drive Hannaford and Obst were generating the Port forwards were well held and its rovers were unable to cope with the hard-hitting Bennetts in the back pocket. Kerley and Roach generated drive for West, particularly in the last half, and gave West a chance to open up a gap but Wright and Thomas missed easy, shots for goal.

Late in the last quarter John Thompson goaled for West to reduce the margin to two points. Hayes then goaled after a nice kick from Gill. Wright replied for West to make the margin again two points. The Port defence then hung on desperately to finish West's hopes for successive premierships.

Source: S.A Football Budget, 29/9/1973.

Includes pre match interview with Kerley and Motley, Eustice Magarey Medal presentation and 5 minutes of colour highlights:

1963 PORT ADELAIDE 12-8 (80) defeated North Adelaide 6-11 (90)

After being hotly challenged in the first half, Port outscored the Roosters to win the 1963 flag by 33 points before a crowd of 52.668.

Devoid of frills and finesse the manner of Port’s win was typical - relentless pressure, fitness, big man mobility and a willingness to take the risks.

North were down 31 points at the end of the first quarter and it looked as though the game would be a one-sided affair. Hannaford for Port was dominating. North then lifted by a dazzling performance by Lindner at half-forward, spectacularly fought back to trail by only five points at half-time.

The early part of the third quarter was fast and furious with both sides looking for a match winning  break. The break came when Philp marked strongly and scored glorious goals from the forward pocket to see Port 12 points up at three-quarter time. Port then took over the last quarter - aided by strong rucks and centre line - to run out comfortable winners.

Source: S.A Football Budget, 29/9/1973.

Newsreel Highlights:

1964 SOUTH ADELAIDE 9-15 (69) defeated Port Adelaide 5-12 (42)

This remains one of the great moments in SANFL history. Neil Kerley lifted the Panthers from bottom in 1963 to topple powerhouse Port Adelaide by 27 points.

Port Adelaide couldn’t manage a goal to half time and South Adelaide lead by 26 points at the main break. Port came back in the 3rd term to trail by only 16 at ¾ time but the Panthers were too strong in the final term.

I remember a dominant David Kantilla as best on ground, and Ian Day booting a late goal to seal the victory in his last match. Dennis Errey and Ian Hannaford were best for the Magpies.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Newsreel Highlights:

1964 Grand Final 1980's TV Flashback:

1965 PORT ADELAIDE 12-8 (80) defeated Sturt 12-5 (77)

Geof Motley held aloft the TS Hill Trophy for his 9th premiership with Port Adelaide.

The first half was evenly fought and Port held a 1point lead at the break. Port booted away to a 29 point lead at ¾ time after Port’s Kevin Salmon missed a goal from 6 inches out. This almost proved costly as Sturt came home strong, but when the siren sounded the Magpies were 3 points clear.

Geof Motley and John Cahill played best for the Magpies whilst Tony “Doc” Clarkson was best player and ME Jones booted 6 for the Blues.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Newsreel Highlights:

1965 Grand Final Port v Sturt 1980's TV flashback:

1966 STURT 16-16 (112) defeated Port Adelaide 8-8 (56)

This final brought a changing of the guard for football supremacy in this state and ushered in a new dynasty under Jack Oatey at Unley Oval.

The game was in the balance at ¾ time with Sturt holding a 17 point lead, but they booted away early in the final term to win by 56 points, their first flag since 1940.

Former Hawthorn premiership player Malcolm Hill was outstanding in the ruck and ME Jones unstoppable with 8 goals. Trevor Obst was Port's best in the back pocket.

A special memory was that of John Halbert’s gleaming teeth and forehead as he accepted the TS Hill trophy.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Newsreel Highlights: Channel 9 Highlights: Channel 7 Highlights & Halbert interview:

1967 STURT 13-10 (88) defeated Port Adelaide 10-17 (77)

After leading early, Port Adelaide took control of the game and held an 8 point lead at ¾ time. Sturt worked their way back into the game and took the lead late in the final term, and a goal from the Tumby Bay hero Roger Dunn sealed the victory as the Blues held on to win by 11 points.

Brenton Adcock was superb for Sturt whilst John Cahill was best for the Magpies in his first year as captain. Acting Captain John Murphy accepted the trophy for the Blues.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Newsreel Highlights:

1968 STURT 12-18 (90) defeated Port Adelaide 9-9 (63)

Sturt’s third flag in a row, and all of them against Port Adelaide.

A tight first half but Sturt took control in the third term to lead by 31 points at the final break, eventually running out winners by 27 points.

My memories of this match were Peter Endersbee’s 2 superb checkside goals in the scoreboard pocket, and Eric Freeman coming on after ½ time to kick 2 goals after a successful tour of England with the Australian cricket team.

Paul Bagshaw was best on ground, and Bob Shearman accepted the cup in John Halbert’s absence. An 18 year old Russell Ebert made his Grand Final debut in this match.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Newsreel Highlights: Entire Last Quarter (Channel 9):

1969 STURT 24-15 (159) defeated GLENELG 13-16 (94)

After winning the minor premiership, Glenelg were dominated by Sturt in the major round. Jack Oatey had the Blues at peak from at the right end of the season and Sturt ran out comfortable 65 point winners.

In this match, Richmond champion Royce Hart was allowed to play for Glenelg under National Service rules. He was felled by Terry Short early in the match but recovered to record 24 kicks for the match but he couldn’t help the Tigers over the line.

Malcolm Greenslade booted 9 goals and John Tilbrook 4 for the Blues, and Magarey Medallist Fred Phillis booted 5 for the Bays. This match saw the end of Neil Kerley’s playing career.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Newsreel Highlights:

1970 STURT 12-13 (85) defeated Glenelg 9-10 (64)

Sturt registered their 5th flag in a row with a 21 point win over Glenelg in wet, boggy conditions at Adelaide Oval.

The day before the match was a beautiful sunny day and I camped overnight outside the ground. At 4am, thick black clouds moved in over the John Cresswell stand and rain began to bucket down. It never stopped, and after a promising start by Glenelg, the Blues overcame them kicking 11 goals to 6 in the final 3 quarters.

Once again the mercurial Paul Bagshaw was best on ground and Malcolm Greenslade booted 6 goals for the Blues, and Fred Phillis steered through 4 for the Tigers.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Newsreel Highlights: Channel 9 Highlights: Channel 2 Highlights:

1971 NORTH ADELAIDE 10-19 (79) defeated Port Adelaide 9-5 (59)

Swamp Fox Mike Patterson became the first Victorian to coach an SANFL premiership team when North Adelaide registered a comfortable win over Port Adelaide.

The Roosters led by 29 points at ¼ time and lengthened it to 56 points by ¾ time. The margin would have been greater but for inaccuracy in front of goals. Port scored 7 goals to 1 in the final term but North had done enough to win by 20 points.

Barrie Robran was superb for the Roosters and Adrian Rebbeck booted 4 goals, and Trevor Sorrell booted 4 for the Magpies.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Newsreel Highlights: Channel 9 Highlights:

1972 NORTH ADELAIDE 19-14 (128) defeated Port Adelaide 10-12 (72)

In a turnabout from the previous year, Port Adelaide were the better team in the first half leading by 8 points at half time, but a rejuvenated North ran all over the Magpies to record a 56 point victory and back-to-back premierships.

Once again it was Barrie Robran in concert as he dominated the match with his uncanny skills. Mike Patterson proclaimed him the champion as he raised Robran’s arm at the end of the match.

Dennis Sachse booted 6 goals for the Roosters while Russell Ebert was best and Trevor Grimwood booted 4 goals for the Magpies.Acting captain Bob Hammond accepted the trophy for the Roosters.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Complete Match Video:

1973 GLENELG 21-11 (137) defeated North Adelaide 19-16 (130)

“Oh what a beauty” the Glenelg players sang after a thrilling 7 point victory signifying the end of the greatest Grand Final in SANFL history, and Glenelg’s first flag for 39 years. And what a beauty it was.

Glenelg had been the dominant team all season, but North Adelaide peaked at the right time to turn in a classic.

Played in very hot conditions, the Roosters led by 22 points at ¼ time, but after that Glenelg came back and the lead see-sawed for most of the match, the ball racing from end to end all day.

In the dying moments of the game, Barrie Robran kicked the ball to John Plummer who goaled giving the Roosters a 5 point lead with only minutes remaining. Then decisive moment of the game came when a turn over allowed Craig Marriott to boot the ball into the Glenelg forward line. Graham Cornes launched himself at the ball and took a screamer, then booted a goal from 30 metres out to give the Tigers a 1 point lead. They went forward once more for John Sandland to mark and goal to give the Tigers a 7 point win.

Rex Voigt booted 7 goals and Peter Carey 6 goals for Tigers whilst Adrian Rebbeck booted 4 in the 2nd half for the Roosters.

Peter Marker gleefully accepted the trophy whilst a gallant captain Bob Hammond had played his last game for North.

This was the last Grand Final played at Adelaide Oval, and what a fitting farewell it was.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Good quality match highlights:

Newsreel Highlights:

The full black and white video of the game is not available here because it is currently available for purchase from the Glenelg Football club. To purchase click here

1974 STURT 9-16 (70) defeated Glenelg 8-7 (55)

This was the first Grand Final played at Football Park, the new home of SANFL football. As the ground was nowhere near completion, it wasn’t protected from the elements and a strong wind blew down the ground towards the golf course end.

Sturt used the wind early and led by 40 points at ¼ time. By half time they led by 12 points and were looking good until a strong 3rd term by Glenelg into the breeze saw Sturt leading by only 5 points at ¾ time.

With Glenelg kicking with a strong breeze in the final term it was looking very much like a Tigers flag, but Sturt hung on bravely and ran out winners by 15 points.

Rick Davies was best for Sturt and Peter Marker best for the Tigers.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Match Highlights including first half(Channel 9):

Complete Last Half (Channel 9):

1975 NORWOOD 9-10 (64) defeated Glenelg 7-10 (52)

In a tough bruising affair, Norwood won the club’s first premiership for 25 years, coached by former North Adelaide champion Bob Hammond.

It was a tough bruising “take no prisoners” affair with John Wynne’s inspirational leadership a significant factor.

Norwood led by 14 points at ¼ time, and a quick 3 goal burst from Glenelg late in the 2nd term saw them lead by 4 points at half time. The game remained in the balance until late in the final term when the Redlegs finally broke through. Jim Michalanney kicked a freakish goal from the impossible pocket at the golf course end to give Norwood a 2 point lead at ¾ time.

Phil Gallagher kicked a superb running goal early in the final term to give Norwood the edge, and a Michael Olsen goal gave Norwood some breathing space. From there it was tough hard slog until the siren sounded to see Norwood home by 12 points.

Neil Button and John Wynne were outstanding for Norwood whilst Rex Voigt and Wayne Phillis were Glenelg’s best.

One highlight of the game was champion forward Fred Phillis booting only 6 behinds for the match.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Complete Match Video:

1976 STURT 17-14 (116) defeated Port Adelaide 10-15 (75)

Sturt captain held aloft the TS Hill premiership trophy and proclaimed, “This is the finest hour in the history of the Sturt Football Club”. After 7 premierships in Sturt’s golden era, who among us were going to argue with him. Port Adelaide had been the best performed team all season, but if you ever needed to see a team reach their peak on the day, this was it.

Port led early but Sturt took control in the 2nd term, leading by 22 points. They consolidated their lead at ¾ time and played all over Port in the final quarter to win by 41 points.

One defining moment of the game came in the final term when the game still needed to be won. Bagshaw leapt high to take a grab and boot the goal which sealed the win for the Blues.

The ubiquitous Rick Davies was superhuman, taking marks all around the ground and the skipper Bagshaw was high in the best players.

The highest crowd ever assembled for an SANFL Grand Final was recorded on this day. 66,897 people witnessed the game, a number of them seated on the ground outside the boundary line.

The loss served as a wake up call for Port Adelaide who where about to embark upon yet another successful era in the club’s history, and remarkably for Sturt, the powerhouse of the past decade, they would not win another premiership for 26 years.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Port final training session:

Complete Match Video:

1977 PORT ADELAIDE 17-11 (113) defeated Glenelg 16-9 (105

"It’s taken us a bloody long time, but Geez it’s worth it”, remarked a jubilant Russell Ebert as he accepted Port Adelaide’s first premiership in 12 seasons, perhaps appropriate that the state’s most successful football club won the premiership in the centenary of SA football.

The match was played in brilliant spring conditions and was tight all day with the Tigers leading by 5 points at ¼ time, Port by 10 at half time, and again by 9 at ¾ time. The most infamous event was the Tim Evans – Fred Phillis clash, I still don’t know what happened there, perhaps someone can tell me.

Port Adelaide kicked away early in the final term but Glenelg came back hard to challenge for the flag. Then Port steadied to win a great match.

Brian Cunningham and Russell Ebert starred and Tim Evans booted 7 goals for the Magpies, whilst Kym Hodgeman was best and Bob Paech booted 5 goals for the Tigers.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

1978 NORWOOD 16-15 (111), defeated Sturt 14-26 (110)

In perhaps one of the biggest upsets in the history of Grand Finals, Norwood defeated hot favourite Sturt by 1 solitary point in a sensational football match.

Sturt went into the match having lost only one match for the season and sprinted to a 28 point lead at ¼ time. Norwood steadied and the next two quarters Sturt were unable to add to their lead, mainly due to inaccuracy in shooting for goal.

Two incidents still discussed today; John Wynne paying a visit to the Sturt coaching box in the third term, and “that mark” paid to Phil Gallagher, allowing him to kick a goal to put Norwood back in front late in the final term.

Sturt led by 29 points at ¾ time but Norwood came back hard hitting the lead half way into the final term with a goal tro John Wynne. From then on it was lick for kick as both sides slugged out a classic finish. Sturt peppered the goal late in the match registering only 2 points. When the siren sounded, the Redlegs were 1 point ahead, and premiers in the club’s centenary year.

Michael Taylor was best and Brian Adamson kicked 5 goals for the Redlegs, whilst best for the Blues was Bruce Winter.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

1979 PORT ADELAIDE 9-9 (63) defeated South Adelaide 3-14 (32)

South Adelaide were sentimental favourites in their first Grand Final for 15 years, but Port Adelaide took control of the match early in heavy wintery conditions that made scoring almost impossible.

Port attacked the game early and managed to register 5 goals in the first quarter including a classic goal on the run by Darrell Cahill. South Adelaide pushed hard in the 2nd term, booting all of their 3 goals and going in at the main break only 8 points in arrears. In the third term, Port added 4-4 to 0-1 and led by 35 points at the final break. From that moment it was a case of Port bottling up the game, pushing most players into defence or around the ball.

Luckily I was in the member’s bar that afternoon, and all I recall from the final term was Robert “Sticks” Dolan belting throw-ins back over the line for another throw in. Not a goal was scored in the final term and Port ran out victors by 31 points.

Tim Evans booted 4 goals for the Magpies whilst Eddie Fry and Andy Bennett played well for the Panthers.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

1980 PORT ADELAIDE 11.15.91 d Norwood 9.9.63

Port Adelaide were hot favourites in 1980 after a dominant season, Norwood started poorly but built as the season progressed, and hit their best form in the finals. They had worked their way from 5th to play in the Grand Final, but Port were still expected to win comfortably.

Norwood attacked early to lead by 8 points at ¼ time, and Port went in at ½ time with a 1 point lead. The third quarter was tight, neither side allowing the other any room, and Norwood went into the final break with a 4 point advantage. The final term was a classic with Norwood still leading by 4 points half way into the term and looked capable of an upset until Bruce Abernethy created a goal from a brilliant turnover. This was all Port Adelaide needed as they arrested the momentum and took the game by 18 points.

Greg Phillips was tremendous at CHB for the Magpies whilst Michael Taylor and a young Michael Aish were superb for the Redlegs.

The format of the finals was reviewed after this season with Norwood only allowed 6 days recovery from the Preliminary Final.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

 

 

1981 PORT ADELAIDE 14-11 (95), defeated Glenelg 6-8 (44)

Brian Cunningham accepted his third premiership flag and cup in a row as Port Adelaide captain.

The Magpies opened in sensational fashion slamming on early goals and racing to a 40 point lead at ¼ time. Glenelg fought on in the 2nd term but couldn’t make much impact on the scoreboard, trailing by 38 points at the long break.

The game was stopped late in the 2nd quarter when Neville Caldwell was knocked unconscious and taken from the ground on a stretcher. Port went to 50 point lead early in the 3rd term and from that moment the game was over. The Magpies lead by 66 points at the final break and eventually ran out 51 victors.

Russell Ebert was the first ever Jack Oatey Medallist after a brilliant game in the centre.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

Port players on "Channel 9 Sports Show" day after GF:

1982 NORWOOD 20-13 (133) defeated Glenelg 9-17 (71)

Neil Balme engineered his first premiership with Norwood winning the 1982 flag in fine fashion by 62 points. Norwood had beated Port in the second semi for the week’s rest, while Glenelg won a spot in the final with a bruising 1 point win over Port in the Preliminary Final.

Norwood kicked into a strong wind but led by 7 points at ¼ time, then went into half time with a 22 point buffer. Another great “into the wind” 3rd term saw Norwood leading by 24 at ¾ time, and aided by a strong wind and tiring Glenelg legs, Norwood raced home to win in emphatic fashion.

Danny Jenkins won the JO Medal, rookie Garry McIntosh was sensational all day, and Rick Neagle booted 6 goals for the Redlegs, whilst Graham Cornes and Peter Carey battled hard all day for the Tigers.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

1983 WEST ADELAIDE 21-16 (142) defeated Sturt 16-12 (108)

Neil Kerley, the man who coached West Adelaide to their premiership 22 years previously was at the helm once more to help the Bloods to another Grand Final victory. And what a premiership it was with West Adelaide being the dominant side all year and well deserving winners. Sturt, a classy opponent, simply were not able to match a strong West unit on the day.

Sturt led by 6 points at quarter time, but an incredible 10 goal 2nd quarter by the Bloods saw them lead by 30 points at half time. That quarter set up the win as every time Sturt challenged in the second half, West were able to respond with a streadying goal to eventually run out winners by 34 points.

Skipper Ian Borchard and Geoff Morris were best and Bruce Lindner and Roger Luders kicked 5 and 4 goals respectively for the Bloods, Brendon Howard was best for the Blues, and Michael Graham (5) and Peter Motley (4) were their leading goal scorers.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

1984 NORWOOD 15-10 (100) defeated Port Adelaide 13-13 (91)

This was the year of the History Makers. Neil Balme’s Redlegs became the first team to win a premiership from 5th position in a quality and entertaining Grand Final.

The match started in confusion after Craig Balme and Tim Evans had some fun before the bounce. It was enough to have the crowd at fever pitch, and that’s the way things remained until the final siren.

Although Norwood went to a quarter time lead of 19 points, you could bet Port were going to come back, and they did to trail by only 4 points at ½ time. Possibly the defining moment of the game came at a time in the 3rd quarter when Keith Thomas, running the wrong way, took a sensational mark to give Norwood the boost it had been looking for. A tight 3rd term saw the Magpies lead by 3 points at ¾ time, and the final term didn’t disappoint. The game remained in the balance until late in the final term when Neville “Rocky” Roberts read the play best and booted a goal to put the Redlegs more than a goal clear, and give them the premiership.

Keith Thomas was best and Neville Roberts booted 6 goals for the Redlegs, whilst Stephen “Bomber” Clifford was best and Tim Evans booted 4 goals for the Magpies.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

1985 GLENELG 21-15 (141) defeated North Adelaide 12-12 (84)

Graham Cornes returned to Glenelg as coach, and in his first season managed to win the flag for the first time in 12 seasons. Glenelg had competed in 5 Grand Finals since 1973 and been the bridesmaid each time.

Although being favourite, North Adelaide jumped out early and mid way through the 2nd quarter led the game by 5 goals. It looked like North by how far, but Glenelg had other ideas. For the rest of the quarter Glenelg slammed on the next 7 goals to take a 12 lead half time lead. That stretched the lead to 30 by ¾ time and stormed home to a 57 point win.

In his final game for the Tigers before switching to Carlton, Stephen Kernahan was unstoppable all day and won the Jack Oatey medal after booting 7 goals. Stephen Riley was best for a disappointing Roosters.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

After match interviews and club presentations:

The actual grand final is not available here because it is currently available for purchase from the Glenelg Football club. To purchase click here

The Day After! Glenelg players appear on Channel 10 "Sport Scene" program:

1986 GLENELG 21-9 (135) defeated North Adelaide 12-15 (87)

Back-to-Back flags for the Tigers, both of them against a luckless North Adelaide. Although the margin was similar to 1985, the circumstances were different.

This time North Adelaide were favourites to take the chocolates but Glenelg imposed themselves on the match early to lead by 24 points at the first break and 33 points at half time. One thought North could get back into the match but Glenelg cemented their position to lead by 42 points at the final break, finally winning by 48 points.

Jack Oatey Medallist Tony Hall booted 6 goals from CHF and captain Peter Carey was dominant in the ruck, whilst David Robertson and Darel Hart were best for the Roosters.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

After match presentation, lap of honour and interviews:

The actual grand final is not available here because it is currently available for purchase from the Glenelg Football club. To purchase click here

1987 NORTH ADELAIDE 23-7 (145) defeated Glenelg 9-9 (63)

North Adelaide finally turned the tables on Glenelg with a stunning 82 point victory.

The game ugly real early for the Tigers at North slammed on 5 goals to nothing and led by 31 points at quarter time. They kicked it out to an insurmountable 59 point lead with former NBA basketballer Mike Parsons and John Roberts dominating the forward line and Mick Redden strong in the ruck.

The Roosters continued on their merry way in the third term taking it out to a 82 point lead by 3 quarter time with the Jarman brothers turning on a clinic. The final term was a non-event, but the Roosters didn’t mind, the flag was finally theirs after 15 years.

Parsons (6 goals) won the Oatey Medal, and John Roberts kicked 5 goals for the Roosters.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

Complete Match Video (ABC telecast):

1988 PORT ADELAIDE 12-12 (84) defeated Glenelg 8-7 (55)

Just when you think maybe Port Adelaide are a spent force, that’s when they are at their most dangerous. John Cahill returned to replace Russell Ebert as Magpies Coach and proceeded to lead them to a flag in his first year.

Glenelg kicked 3 early goals and led by 19 points early, but Port eased their way back into the game to lead by 7 at half time. Port Adelaide just got better as the match unfolded and Glenelg were unable to match them. They led by 21 points at ¾ time and ran out winners by 29 points.

For the Magpies, Bruce Abernethy and David Hynes were best and Scott Hodges showed signs of things to come with 4 goals, whereas John Seebohm played well all day at CHB for the Tigers. Glenelg champion Peter Carey had played his final game of SANFL football.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty.

Complete Match Video:

Complete Match Video (ABC telecast):

1989 PORT ADELAIDE 15-18 (108) defeated North Adelaide 1-8 (14)

The infamous “one goal in mind” final. Port Adelaide and North Adelaide were clearly the best two sides of 1989, and after a competitive 2nd Semi Final between the two, the Grand Final promised to be a classic.

Unfortunately it was not to be as Port led North 9-7 to 0-3 at half time. The game was over and final score was merely academic.

North Adelaide kicked their first and only goal in the 3rd term from the boot of Craig Burton. Port turned a 65 point ¾ time lead into a 94 point victory.

Captain Russell Johnston and Andrew Obst were best with Scott Hodges and Darren Smith booting 4 goals each for the Magpies, whilst captain Darel Hart was the Roosters’ best.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

1990 PORT ADELAIDE 16-12 (108) defeated Glenelg 13-15 (93)

Glenelg had beaten Port Adelaide in the 2nd Semi Final and marched into the 1990 Grand Final as slight favourites, although their poor record against Port in Grand Finals was dangling overhead like the sword of Demicles.

Both teams matched up well in the first term with Glenelg taking a 2 point lead, but Port powered away in the second term to set up a 4 goal lead. Played in near perfect conditions, the Scott Hodges – John Fidge shoot out continued into the second half but Port Adelaide managed to hold sway leading by 22 points at ¾ time and eventually hanging on to win by 15.

David Hynes and George Fiacchi were best for Port Adelaide while John Seebohm was best for Glenelg. Hodges booted 6 for the Magpies and Fidge ended with 5 Tiger goals.

This was the final SANFL season before the Adelaide Crows entered the AFL, and Graham Cornes’ speech in the Port Adelaide rooms after the game managed to raise a few eyebrows.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

TV news reports after 1990 Grand Final:

1991 NORTH ADELAIDE 21-22 (148) defeated West Adelaide 11-7 (73)

The 1991 season ushered in the most significant change in the history SA football. The Adelaide Crows had entered the AFL with the licence held by the SANFL, the Woodville and West Torrens clubs had merged under the name W-WT Eagles and coached by Neil Balme, and the 1991 was the first Grand Final since 1949 that didn’t see at least one of Port, Norwood, Glenelg and Sturt competing.

In a tough, sometimes spiteful affair, North broke free of West in the second term to set up a 30 point lead, then they raced away to win by 75 points.

Darel Hart (7 goals) won the Jack Oatey Medal with Peter Krieg and Craig Burton (4 goals) doing best for the Roosters while Glen Goss did best for the Bloods. This game saw the emergence of a young Tony Modra for West Adelaide, later to gain notoriety at the AFL level.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

NB: every Grand Final from the 19th century to that time had featured either Port, Norwood, Sturt or North a sequence that wasn't broken until 2000. 

Complete Match Video:

1992 PORT ADELAIDE 17-3 (105) defeated Glenelg 7-7 (49)

Yet another Port Adelaide v Glenelg Grand Final, the fifth since 1977, and the result was no different with a spirited and accurate Port charging away to a 56 point victory.

Glenelg led early by 13 points but Port took over to lead by 21 points at ½ time and stretched it to 50 at the final break.

Glenelg had no answer to the brilliant Nathan Buckley in the middle, Darren Smith at CHF, and full forward Scott Hodges with 6 goals.

For the Tigers, Andrew McKay and Darren Manswell were best and John Fidge managed 4 goals.

Greg Phillips hoisted the TS Hill trophy overhead, and Nathan Buckley added a Jack Oatey Medal to his Magarey Medal and premiership medallion. It was Buckley’s last game for the Magpies as he headed north to resume an AFL career with the Brisbane Bears.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

1993 W-WT EAGLES 17-20 (122) defeated Norwood 7-7 (49)

Under new coach Bruce Winter, the W-WT Eagles were clearly the dominant team in 1993 and thoroughly deserved their premiership.

Their opponent on the day was a steadily improving Norwood who some suggest had played their Grand Final a week earlier when they defeated Port Adelaide, but the Eagles were clearly the better side on the day.

They jumped out of the blocks early leading by 23 points, then by 59 points at half time. With the match over, Norwood slugged it out in the 2nd half but were unable to make any impression on the scoreboard, the Eagles running out 73 point victors.

Steven Sziller and Wayne Weidemann were clearly the best players for the Eagles while Stephen Rowe battled hard for the Redlegs. Sziller was awarded the Jack Oatey Medal, and Peter Schwarz accepted the TS Hill trophy for the first time in the club’s 3 year history, but the first flag for 40 years since West Torrens won in 1953.

Review courtesy of Adelaide Hawke from BigFooty. 

Complete Match Video:

1994 PORT ADELAIDE 15-16 (106) defeated W-WT Eagles 10.9 (69)

The Eagles were overwhelming favourites to win the 1994 Grand Final, as they had beaten Port  5 times throughout the season including an easy win over Port in the second semi-final.

The match was played in very wet and windy conditions. The Eagles came out firing, pouring on 6 quick goals before Ginever goaled for Port from a free kick. From this point on Port started to improve. In the tough conditions the match was a slog, a real arm-wrestle and by three- quarter time The Eagles were still in front by 2 goals. To this point Scott Hodges had been well held by Eagles defender Jason Spehr.

Before the start of the final quarter many, including the ABC commentary team doubted Port had enough fuel in the tank to win the match. In the final quarter the rain cleared and the sun began to shine. Scott Hodges (who Port coach Cahill had seriously considered benching) ditched the long sleeve jumper he had worn for the first 3 quarters for a short one and proceeded to kick 5 goals straight for the quarter. His team kicked 9 goals to the Eagle's 1 in the final term and secured their 32nd premiership.

Tim Ginevar accepted the Seymour Hill Cup, whilst Port's Darryl Wakelin was awarded the Jack Oatey medal for best on ground.

The main goal kickers for Port; Hodges kicked 6, Ginevar, Williams and Andrew McLeod 2, whilst for the Eagles Morphett kicked 4, and Taylor 2.

Source: Niehus, C, 2011, A Recent History of the Port Adelaide Football Club, Cargo Art Publishing, Mansfield Park, Adelaide, SA.

Complete Match Video:

1995 PORT ADELAIDE 13.16 (94) defeated CENTRAL 6.10 (46)

After securing their 2nd minor premiership, Central District could not overcome their (and everyone else’s!) finals nemesis, Port Adelaide in the second semi. They ground out a 24 point win over Norwood in the Preliminary, setting up their first Grand Final berth in their 32nd season.

Roger Girdham, the Bulldog captain, won the toss and surprisingly chose to kick into a breeze deemed to be worth one or two goals. And it could have been disaster had Port not gone on a behind spree - five behinds were registered between the 4:37 and 6:41 time marks. But Port could manage only 3.7 to 0.2. When Central had their turn with the wind, the scores were closed in at half time, 3.11 to 3.6.

A pivotal moment in the third quarter broke the game open for the Magpies. Port still leading by only 5 points, 12 minutes in, saw Rohan Smith kick into attack. Just off the play, John Abbott struck Darren Mead, who was shepherding for Smith. Abbott was reported, and Darren Smith, who received the free downfield, short passed to Stephen Carter, who goaled. This gave Port the lift needed to break the tight tussle open, and four minutes later had added another 2.1, to have a 24 point buffer.

Another goal to Spiro Malakellis before three quarter time, left Central with the tough task of recovering a 31 point margin. But the momentum was all with the black and white, who added another 5.2 to 2.3, to annexe their 33rd premiership.

Anthony Darcy, prolific ball winner all day, was a deserved Jack Oatey Medallist (36 disposals, 2 goals) and skipper Tim Ginever (with 14 possessions in the third quarter) were the Magpies best, while Rick MacGowan (32 possessions) and Scott Lee were the Bulldogs who were the Dogs’ standouts.

Review courtesy of spell_check from SAfooty.

Complete Match Video: 

 

 

1996 PORT ADELAIDE 11.14 (80) defeated CENTRAL 6.8 (44)

"You have to lose one to win one" That was the feeling around Central District for the 1996 Grand Final. Again finishing minor premiers, this time notching up their first win against Port in a final to head straight to the big dance. Port just got over the line in a controversial Preliminary Final over Norwood in a typical come from behind win to set up another Central/Port Grand Final. Maybe this was the Dogs time - Port would be recovering from a high - Roger Girdham winning the toss and choosing this time to kick with the breeze. A sign of things to come? Well, at half time the scores were at a similar state as the year before (Port 7 points to the good), so with the slight wind advantage, it had to be the Dogs to make their move.

And within 5 minutes, Central had a 6 point lead. Abruptly however, once more, Port Adelaide showed who was the boss when it came to finals. From this point in the match onwards, they would kick 7.8 to 1.2. Led by Scott Hodges (who for the second time outscored the opposition in a Grand Finals match) with 7 goals 4 behinds and Jack Oatey Medallist David Brown (22 possessions and 6 tackles), they would ensure another Magpie march to the flag. For Central, Stephen Schwerdt was best (game high 27 possessions) and Scott Lee with some outstanding defending work particularly in the first half.

The win also gave Stephen Williams his first premiership as coach, having stepped in to carry on the dynasty of the late 80s and 90s by John Cahill. He was preparing the first year for Port Adelaide in the AFL for season 1997.

Review courtesy of spell_check from SAfooty.

Complete Match Video:

News reports and post match celebrations at Alberton:

1997 NORWOOD 19.12 (126) defeated PORT ADELAIDE 7.11 (53)

Norwood ended all speculation that they fold under finals pressure by destroying  Port Adelaide in one of the clubs greatest grand final victories. The Redlegs claimed their 27th premiership trophy by thumping the Magpies by a 73 points, Port’s biggest loosing margin in a Grand Final.

Norwood started the game without the inspirational Garry McIntosh. He was suspended by trial by video after striking Central wingman Stuart Dew. Norwood used his absence as inspiration and ran through a banner which demanded "Do it for Macca as he would do it for you".

One of Port's big mistakes was made before the match started with their selection committee only picking one recognised ruckman in Brett Chalmers, while Norwood went in with three, Simon Eastaugh, Aaron Keating and Andrew Pascoe. The Port move backfired just 15 minutes into the game when Chalmers went off limping and did not come back onto the ground. From then on Norwood's big men dominated the centre square and gave Norwood's small men first use of the ball.

The first half was close and though Norwood had most use of the ball they failed to capitalise on the scoreboard. In the third quarter Norwood stepped up a notch and started to totally dominate kicking 7 goals to Ports 1. In the final quarter Norwood continued on their merry way and if it was not for a few late goals to Port the margin would have been a lot higher.

John Cunningham was awarded the Jack Oatey Medal. It was incredible that he was playing at all as he underwent a knee reconstruction in April. He managed to play a couple of reserves games before being called into the league side for the preliminary final. The rest is history as he destroyed Port in the Grand Final with his blistering pace and 2 brilliant goals.

For Norwood, West and Harvey kicked 2 goals whilst Cunningham, Pascoe, Roger James and Nathan Basset all kicked 2. Darren Smith and Pedlar both kicked 2 for Port.

Review by David Perkovic.

Complete Match Video:

1998 PORT ADELAIDE 11.9 (75) defeated STURT 9.12 (66)

After a 22 year wait Port Adelaide finally avenged their disastrous 1976 Grand Final performance with a tough nine point win over 1998 minor premiers Sturt and in the process became only the second team to win the premiership starting from the elimination final. As in ’76, the side that was full of battle scarred finals veterans had too much grand final knowledge and know-how that the highly talented but inexperienced younger opposition could not match at the crucial moments.

The Magpies were playing in their fifth consecutive grand final whilst Sturt had only two players – Brodie Atkinson and Scott Robinson at other clubs – who had experienced playing in the big one.

Port enhanced its never-say-die reputation in wearing down Sturt in a tough desperate last quarter after the Double Blues had gained a four point lead midway through that quarter due to goals from Nathon Irvin and Julian Burton. Port’s last quarter heroics were provided by Tony Bamford who shot out a superb handball to the running Andrew Obst who slotted a superb goal from the north east pocket. Bamford then followed up with a running goal to put the Magpies eight points clear. Bryan Beinke, who had been well held, burst into the game with a pair of courageous marks and two more goals to make the game safe, despite late goals from Sturt youngster Adam Lange, who mysteriously had endured most of the game sitting on the Blues bench.

Sturt fans still remain frustrated by this game and love to robustly debate a few goal umpiring decisions made on the day. Rover Jarrod Twitt kicked five points after kicking five goals without a miss in the 2nd Semi Final against West. Chris Thredgold played an outstanding game to send a kickless Scott Hodges off into retirement and Port ruckman Brett Chalmers was awarded the Jack Oatey Medal.

Review courtesy of RD from SAfooty.

Complete Match Video:

1999 PORT ADELAIDE 14.17 (103) defeated NORWOOD 14.9 (93)

Port's dominance of the competition since the advent of the AFL in South Australia continued with this grand final win, but this time they had to work like never before to secure their premiership. Norwood were gallant runners-up, and certainly played brilliantly in patches but a quiet third quarter and a couple of mistakes late in the game cost them victory.

Norwood kicked with a useful breeze in the first quarter but it was Port who kicked the first two goals of the game. Then Norwood settled down and dominated the remainder of the quarter. Steven Pitt and Robert Neill led a winning Norwood backline and the Redlegs' midfield of Ben Kemp, Roger James and James Thiessen were clearly too slick and skilful for their opponents. The 'Legs led by 13 points at quarter time, which was a fair reward for their early superiority.

Norwood continued to defy expectations into the second quarter as they attacked confidently into the wind. Port's forward line still looked slow and error-prone and to make matters worse they lost their half back Stephen Carter with a fractured pelvis. Mark Clayton replaced him there and proceeded to make two horrible errors that were both punished by Norwood goals. Norwood twice led by 20 points close to half-time and non-Port supporters everywhere were rejoicing. However Clayton did redeem himself by twice floating forward for goals late in the quarter then Brett Chalmers, who has a habit of playing well in grand finals, kicked a booming goal to cut the lead to seven points at the long break.

The Magpies finally got into top gear in the third quarter. Darryl Poole had been struggling in ruck against Jon Yerbury but began to get a lot of touches at ground level and fed his wingers in Julian Wait and Simon Tregenza, who had 13 kicks between them for the quarter. Port persisted with a tactic of blasting the ball in long into the wind and saw numerous opportunities wasted, but weight of possession (104 to 62 for the quarter) eventually told as they took the lead then slowly eked the margin out to 15 points. The only Redleg highlight for the quarter was a Daicos like goal from Eugene Warrior. The ball looked as though it was about to roll over the boundary line in the Norwood forward pocket, and the Port defender closest to it seemed happy to let it go. Warrior casually trotted up to the ball and soccered it off the ground for a goal. This act of brilliance couldn't inspire his teammates though, and Port spent the rest of the quarter camped in their forward lines before another late goal to Chalmers put the lead back to 15 points.

Five minutes into the last quarter and the Magpies appeared to have it sewn up when Tregenza played on after a free for out on the full and slotted from 55m. Port then led by 22 points. Despite the fact that many of them looked as though they were exhausted, Norwood rallied and, playing on at every opportunity, they kicked the next four goals - including two more to Warrior who was giving his opponent Tom Carr a torrid time in the back pocket. Suddenly there was less than 10 minutes to go and Norwood were in front by two points and had all the momentum. They surged forward again, the ball trapped in their forward pocket. Roger James gathered it, spun free from a tackle and speared a pass to the waiting (and unopposed) Andrew Pascoe in the goalsquare. If Pascoe had led onto the pass, with his 200cm frame he would have surely taken the mark, but he chose to let the ball come to him. Bad idea. Tom Carr ran back in time to spoil, and the ball was whisked down the other end. Port kept the ball trapped at their end while they kicked three more points to wrest back the lead by a point with about three minutes to go. From the kickout, the ball went to a contest in which Poole brought the ball to ground and dished out a quick handball to Phil McGuinness. Off one step, 55 metres out, McGuinness delivered a torpedo punt that screwed from right to left through for a six-pointer, and Port kept the ball away from Norwood's scoring zone 'til the end.

The much-maligned Poole was the Jack Oatey medallist for best on ground in his last game. Six kicks (including one goal), six marks, 24 (!) handballs and three hit-outs sums up his game - try and bring the ball to ground, then dish it out. David Brown had 25 disposals and kicked two goals in a solid captain's effort. Brian Leys and Paul Northeast had modest stats but were good in defence, especially in the second half. Chalmers (19 touches, 7 marks and 3 goals) had a very good game at CHF. Tregenza (23 disposals and 2 goals) and Julian Wait (14 kicks, 8 handpasses) were good linkmen. Phil McGuinness was fairly quiet but kicked two goals, including the all important last one. Roger James (19 kicks, 10 handballs and two goals) was Norwood's best, the architect of most of their forward thrusts. Steven Pitt kept Paul Evans goalless as well as gathering 18 touches. Jon Yerbury had 22 hit-outs though only 4 kicks and 2 handpasses, almost a complete contrast to his opponent, Poole. Eugene Warrior kicked 4.2 from 8 kicks, and almost made Port regret letting him go. Ben Kemp (32 touches and a goal) was also good in the middle. Pascoe and Scott Bassett both kicked two goals. 

Review by Phillip Monk.

Complete Match Video:

2000 CENTRAL 8.13 (61) defeated W-WT EAGLES 5.9 (39)

"How many premierships have you won?" Now Central District can answer that well-worn taunt with pride, because last Sunday the Bulldogs defeated the Eagles by 22-points to win the clubs first premiership.

The celebrations at Football Park after the game and back at Elizabeth Oval had to be seen to be believed. Hardly any of the spectators left until well after the presentations and the Bulldogs must have set some type of record for the lengthy time it took to run a lap of honour.

In a tough and hard defensive first half, both teams struggled to score goals, while a 'premiership' third quarter of four goals set up the Doggies win. The Eagles made an early charge in the last quarter with two quick goals but then Central put the shutters up.

James Gowans was presented with the Jack Oatey Medal for best on ground. He said, "It's unbelievable, after six straight senior grand finals, (twin brother) Chris and I have finally played in a premiership team. "I've only been here five minutes, but I know this premiership means everything to the club, we actually have a history now. I don't know what it looked like to the spectators, but it was really hard in tight."

Goals were a premium, with Stuart Dew and Daniel Healy each scoring three goals. Healy thought the midfielders, onballers and defence was great. "It was awesome, a great feeling. People talk about the feeling, but you have to experience it to appreciate it."

Club veteran Brian Haraida played his 200th game on Saturday and stated he could not put the feelings into words at the moment. "I thought the backline was brilliant, everyone did what they had to do, stuck to it and never gave up. They were really resilient today. It should be a public holiday in the Elizabeth area, it is huge, well overdue. It was magnificent winning the premiership in my 200th game. I can not thank my team mates enough."

Nathan Steinberner could have been the unluckiest Bulldog after suffering from appendicitis after the qualifying final, but amazingly recovered in time to take his place in the grand final side. Steiny said, "I was a little flat towards the end of the game from my operation, with match fitness, but I felt ok and ran the game out all right. When the siren went, I was just looking for Dewey and the guys, it was unreal."

Young rookie Quinton Graham was over the moon. He was enjoying the atmosphere with all the guys, past players and everyone from the club. He said, "I'm just enjoying the moment and looking forward to coming back next year as defending premiers. "The pressure was unbelievable. Every time I got the ball, I thought there was a full scale riot, the crowd was so vocal, it felt like 80,000 people were here today."

Rick Macgowan played a super game but seemed to spend almost as much time on the bench as the field, coming off on numerous occasions with the blood rule. He said, "I copped a couple of high ones and had a bit of a rest, which didn't hurt me. I felt relieved when the siren went, that last quarter seemed to go on forever. I looked at the clock about 15 times and it didn't seem to move. It was tight all over the ground. We played one on one and did not allow them to get any free men.

Review courtesy of Robert Laidlaw

Complete Match Video:

2001 CENTRAL 10.11 (71) defeated W-WT EAGLES 4.8 (32)

For 36 years Central District remained in the premiership wilderness, but for the second consecutive season, the Bulldogs have taken the ultimate prize to stamp itself as the measuring stick in the SANFL.

On the crest of a nine game winning streak, Central were the favourites with most media outlets to win, but until the game has been played, premierships still remain the elusive holy grail.

Respect has been earned for all of the northern area, as the Bulldogs confirmed that their first flag was not a fluke with a comprehensive demolition of the Eagles last Sunday, winning 10-11 to 4-8, in emphatic style.

Captain Daniel Healy won the toss and chose to kick to the northern end with the aid of a strong breeze. Simon Arnott slotted a goal at the two minute mark to set the Bulldogs alight, but from that point Central struggled to use the wind, and only led by eight points at quarter time.

Sam McArdle had put through a set shot at the 13 minute mark, but two consecutive free kicks gave the Eagles' Chris Kluzek an easy opportunity at the 18 minute mark.

At the break, coach Alastair Clarkson thought it was a settling period for the Bulldogs and told his troops: "Just stick at it. We know we perhaps haven't kicked as many goals with the three goal breeze as we would have liked, but stick at it because anything can happen over the course of four quarters and its going to be real tough for the opposition to hold us."

The Eagles opened the second stanza with an early major, but at the eight minute mark, Sam McArdle grabbed a mark and kicked truly. Then Woodville West Torrens caught fire with two goals in quick succession to wrestle the lead for the first time at the 11 minute mark.

A tense period followed, where only a rushed behind by the Eagles troubled the scoreboard attendants until the 25 minute mark. McArdle took another mark, but fell awkwardly and was stretchered from the arena.

This seemed to be the turning point, as Chris Gowans took the kick and goaled, followed immediately by a further major from Kynan Ford to ensure Central had a lead at the long break.

And the big question on supporters lips: What did Clarkson say to the Bulldogs at half time?

"The second quarter probably wasn't the best. The second half of that quarter we were picking up, and I know if we just have that same intensity in the third quarter, we will destroy them. And because of their hard week, we will have the legs to take them out."

True to their coaches wishes, Central District took complete control at the ball ups, and running in numbers, the Bulldogs rotating midfielders made the Eagles pay for any mistakes in the third term.

After an early point, Daniel Healy kicked a goal at the six minute mark, and then two minutes later, snapped a magnificent left-foot, goal of the game from 30 metres out, to give a confidence-surge through the side.

Only some inaccurate kicking stopped Central from putting the game out of reach at three-quarter time, with only a mark and set shot goal from Paul Scoullar puncturing a brace of five points as the Bulldogs went to a 8-9 to 4-3 lead at lemons. The Eagles were held scoreless for the term.

Clarkson instructed Central not to defend into the wind in the last quarter, but to go for a couple of goals to make it even harder for the Eagles. "We are four goals up, the Eagles need to kick five to win, if we can kick one or two into the breeze, it is going to make it even tougher for them.

"Continue to attack, continue to get on the front foot and have a fair dinkum crack at them, and we can break the game open."

And break the game open they did, keeping the Eagles to only five points, while booting two magic goals to seal the clubs place in history.

Danny Healy kicked a goal at the nine minute mark, that took a leg break late and seemed to be guided through from a greater power, which ignited the crowd, and an orange flare, which seemed to be a signal to start celebrating for the Bulldog's faithful.

The icing came at the 25 minute mark when Kynan Ford ran into an open goal to boot Central's 10th and final major of the grand final.

On his magnificent goal in the third quarter, Healy said after the game: "I don't think it spun right the whole way, I think it was a bit lucky, but it got through and that's the main thing, isn't it?"

And then with his tongue firmly in his cheek, on his major in the last term: "That was actually planned. I planned it to turn left late. No, a bit of luck -- put it on the boot and see what happens."

There were four new Bulldog premiership players, and a rookie premiership coach from Sunday's grand final. Returning Central player Martin McKinnon was delighted with the win and said: "It's the first

success I've had anywhere, it is just so fantastic, all the players were superb today"

Simon Arnott joined the club from the AFL and said: "I had to pinch myself to see if it was real, and when I looked around and saw the other guys jumping around, I realised we finally had done it. I just want to keep doing it and doing it [winning premierships]."

"Unbelievable," was backman Tyson Hay's response after the game. "I felt a bit shaky in the second quarter, when they were playing pretty good footy, and they were a goal up, but then we got a couple of goals late in the half, which was really lucky, great. I'm elated."

And after only 11 league games, ruckman Paul Scoullar is a premiership player. "I can not describe the feeling at the moment, half way through the year I was playing reserves and didn't look like going up, and now I'm part of a league premiership in the second best competition in Australia."

The 'old troupers' like the Gowans twins, Chris and James, Rick Macgowan, Kynan Ford, Paul Geister, et al, repeatedly said words like fantastic, terrific, better than last year, sensational, brilliant, jubilation, and, funny enough, many used the word relief. After all the hard work, the job is complete for 2001.

And Macgowan was the deserving winner of the Jack Oatey Medal, pipping last year's winner James Gowans with a 37 possession effort from the centre.

Review courtesy of Robert Laidlaw

Complete Match Video:

2002 STURT 13.14 (92) defeated CENTRAL 6.9 (45)

Just like their last premiership in 1976, Sturt entered the 2002 Grand Final as the underdog and yet again stunned the South Australian football world by dominating the match against the seemingly unbeatable Central Districts from the opening bounce to record a superb 47 point win.

These teams had already met 4 times during 2002 with the Bulldogs winning the lot, due to their superior physical strength and rugby style tactics successfully nullifying Sturt’s highly skilled group of potent midfielders.

Big man Barnaby French had spent the majority of the 02 season in the AFL and had missed all of Sturt’s earlier contests against the Bulldogs, but his return to Sturt gave his side the luxury of an extra big body to support regular ruckmen Conway and Feast.  In the crucial opening Grand Final minutes he crashed through some Bulldog packs, stood up to the fearsome Gowans twins and also cleaned up Central defender Damian Hicks to remove Hicks from the game and create a mismatch in height between the teams.

Jack Oatey Medallist Matthew Powell played an outstanding first half in defence to continually win the hard ball against the Centrals tough nuts. The Double Blues outfit contained 4 Magarey Medallists (a fifth Medallist was rookie coach Brenton Phillips) and all of them contributed to the win, with Tim Weatherald producing two outstanding tackles that typified Sturt’s commitment to not let an opponent get an easy kick. In the first quarter he goaled from a free after charging at future Sturt Coach Rick Macgowan to catch him holding the ball, and then in the third quarter he ran down and tackled Matthew Slade ferociously, with his resultant free kick converted into a soccered goal from Damian Squire. Those tackles summed up the match with Central players pressured into indecision by Sturt’s fanatical desire to win every contest.

Review courtesy of RD from SAfooty.

Complete Match Video: