Show­down set for Oval

The Advertiser - - FRONT PAGE - SIMEON THOMAS-WIL­SON

PRE­MIER Steven Mar­shall re­mains con­fi­dent Ade­laide Oval will host the Crows and Port Ade­laide Show­down in Round 2 as the Gov­ern­ment and AFL near an agree­ment.

The long-awaited first block of fix­tures for the re­sump­tion of the AFL sea­son will be re­leased next week af­ter cru­cial talks last night be­tween of­fi­cials paved the way for a home clash.

While a the match be­tween the two SA clubs was re­cently touted as Round 2 cer­tainty at Ade­laide Oval af­ter the teams were given elite-ath­letes ex­emp­tion this week, a new glitch threw the game in doubt.

It emerged on Thurs­day night that SA does not have the amount of re­quired field um­pires to of­fi­ci­ate the game nor the crew to broad­cast it.

But sources say the AFL and Gov­ern­ment are clos­ing in on an com­pro­mise that will bring joy to both clubs and lo­cal sup­port­ers.

The AFL is pre­pared to fly in the re­quired um­pires to Ade­laide and have them un­dergo the re­quired 14-day iso­la­tion pe­riod.

The State Gov­ern­ment has of­fered to pro­vide the broad­cast crew with a quar­an­tine ex­emp­tion that will al­low them to drive into SA and leave their base at the Pull­man Ho­tel in the CBD to cover the game.

Mr Mar­shall said the ex­emp­tion to the broad­cast crew would be un­der “strict con­di­tions”.

“I think we are get­ting closer and closer to a lo­cal show­down in South Aus­tralia,” he said.

“The ball is in the court of the AFL, so they will make a de­ci­sion on that.

“We think it is a good deal. I’m hope­ful we can have a Show­down here in South Aus­tralia.”

The AFL was still work­ing through the sce­nario last night.

The use of SANFL field um­pires for the match was quickly ruled out by the AFL.

Ade­laide as­sis­tant coach Michael God­den said he be­lieved SANFL um­pires would be good enough.

“I have no doubt; they do the job every week in the SANFL,” he said.

“There are plenty of ap­pro­pri­ate peo­ple but the AFL has its staff and we un­der­stand that is the way it is meant to be.”

In­au­gu­ral Ade­laide coach and Ad­ver­tiser colum­nist Gra­ham Cornes said on Twit­ter it was “ridicu­lous” that SANFL um­pires could not be con­sid­ered.

The “snag”, as Mr Mar­shall de­scribed it, was only iden­ti­fied on Thurs­day.

If the Show­down can be sched­uled for Round 2 and is played in Ade­laide then it would de­lay the need for the Crows and Port Ade­laide to go to a Gold Coast hub by at least a week.

Power cap­tain Tom Jonas, pic­tured, said if the derby were sched­uled later in the year, it could help the state’s hos­pi­tal­ity in­dus­try.

“We can make it a re­ally big event around Ade­laide and hope­fully get the ho­tel in­dus­try fir­ing again,” he said.

A block­buster be­tween Rich­mond and Colling­wood is ex­pected to restart the sea­son on June 11.

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