South Australian venues embracing AFL’s Gather Round


South Australia’s chance to shine on the national stage has been unveiled, with Norwood and Mount Barker revealed as the unique venues to host matches for the AFL’s Gather Round next year.

The iconic Adelaide Oval will roll out the welcome mat for six matches across Round 5 of next year’s AFL season while the home of the Redlegs at The Parade will showcase two games.

In the heart of the picturesque Adelaide Hills, the pristine Summit Sports Park will feature a clash between the Brisbane Lions and North Melbourne on Saturday April 15 from 12.40pm.

”SANFL is eagerly anticipating the opportunity to embrace the AFL’s inaugural Gather Round in April next year,” SANFL CEO Darren Chandler said.

”It’s a fantastic chance to showcase South Australia as a heartland Australian Football state as I am sure our passionate fans will vote with their feet at each of the matches.

“We wanted to give every person involved with football at every level a chance to get involved with the celebration, hence our decision not to play any SANFL matches on the same weekend – and we are delighted that the Adelaide Football League and Hills Football League have decided to do the same.

”To have a match played in one of our fastest growing regional zones at Mount Barker is exciting for everyone involved in the Adelaide Hills, while the atmosphere will be electric when Norwood Football Club hosts two AFL clashes at its iconic redeveloped venue at The Parade.”

''It's a fantastic chance to showcase South Australia as a heartland Australian Football state as I am sure our passionate fans will vote with their feet at each of the matches.''

SANFL CEO Darren Chandler

The expansive size and high quality surface at the Summit Sports Park were key factors in the Lions and Kangaroos being selected to play at the newly-developed venue.

“Designed and built to AFL standards, the Summit Sport and Recreation Park in Mount Barker is one of the premier playing surfaces in the country,” Mount Barker Council Mayor David Leach said.

“Mount Barker is South Australia’s fastest growing region, expanding by 40 per cent off the back of a forecasted $4.5 billion worth of public and private investment.

“With our population growth and the venue already in use by the Hills Football League – the largest regional football league in the state – this is a great opportunity to grow the game of Australian Rules Football within the region.

“The excitement and legacy of hosting a round of AFL football will be the shot in the arm the code needs in this region and will have significant impacts on the pathway of regional players to the professional element of the code.”

The Summit Sports Park in Mount Barker has been selected as the regional venue to host a match in the AFL’s Gather Round next year.

Norwood president Paul Di Lulio said hosting Fremantle v Gold Coast on Friday April 14 and GWS v Hawthorn on Sunday April 16 was a ”wonderful opportunity.”

”Over the last few years we have had a lot of upgrades at the Oval, with our new Wolf Blass Community Centre, our LED screens around the Oval and the lights were also just upgraded,” Di Lulio said.

”So to be able to showcase that, and also have the opportunity for our local community to be able to see that is fantastic.

”I think another great opportunity is for the AFL to witness what the SANFL grounds are like, as it’s wonderful to bring AFL football to our local State League grounds.”

SA AFL clubs Adelaide and Port Adelaide will play their matches at Adelaide Oval in prime timeslots, the Crows confronting Carlton on Thursday night (April 13) and the Power tackling the Western Bulldogs on Saturday night (April 15).

All competing club members will get free entry to their club’s match while Adelaide Oval Ultimate Football Members will also be granted free entry to all six matches at Adelaide Oval.

Non-competing members and general public tickets are capped at a single price of $30 for adults, $20 concession (15-18 years old) and kids (Under 15) are admitted free at all matches.

Tickets go on sale Monday December 12 via Ticketek, with the exclusive member redemption period opening from 12pm to 4pm before the general sale opens at 5pm.

Norwood Oval’s recently developed Wolf Blass Community Centre.

AFL Gather Round - April 13 to 16

Thursday April 13
Adelaide v Carlton (Adelaide Oval) – 7.10pm

Friday April 14
Fremantle v Gold Coast (Norwood Oval) – 4.40pm
Richmond v Sydney (Adelaide Oval) – 7.40pm

Saturday April 15
Brisbane v North Melbourne (Mount Barker) – 12.40pm
Essendon v Melbourne (Adelaide Oval) – 3.40pm
Port Adelaide v Western Bulldogs (Adelaide Oval) – 7.20pm

Sunday April 16
Geelong v West Coast (Adelaide Oval) – 12.40pm
GWS v Hawthorn (Norwood Oval) – 2.50pm
Collingwood v St Kilda (Adelaide Oval) – 4.20pm

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