By ZAC MILBANK
Adelaide and Port Adelaide have released their 20-player Covid Contingency Lists ahead of the AFL premiership season beginning on Wednesday.
The AFL Top Up Players Covid contingency plan, announced by the AFL last week, provides AFL clubs with a pool of State League players to draw upon should they have less than 28 players to select from their original list.
As well as choosing four players from their SANFL-contracted player list, Adelaide and Port Adelaide were permitted to select a maximum of four players from each of their four Next Generation Academy-aligned SANFL clubs.
Central District, Glenelg, North Adelaide and Sturt are aligned to the Crows while Norwood, South Adelaide, West Adelaide and Woodville-West Torrens are aligned to the Power.
”SANFL congratulates the 40 players selected in the Covid Contingency Lists and wishes them all the best should they be required to play for Adelaide or Port Adelaide football clubs this season at the highest level of our game,” SANFL General Manager Football Matt Duldig said.
”We are proud of the eight SANFL Clubs’ successful development of our strong pool of talent in SA, and the players who represent the Hostplus SANFL League with distinction.
”While losing players mid season is not typically a model SANFL supports, after working with the AFL we believe this structure ensures the strength and integrity of our competition will be protected should the need arise for AFL Covid Contingency List players to be activated.”
SANFL General Manager Football Matt Duldig
''SANFL congratulates the 40 players selected in the Covid Contingency Lists and wishes them all the best should they be required to play for Adelaide or Port Adelaide football clubs this season at the highest level of our game.''
Magarey Medallists Campbell Combe and Luke Partington headline Adelaide’s selections, which also include late SANFL marquee signing Nathan Freeman, who has previously been on St Kilda and Collingwood’s list.
Together with selecting inside ball magnets Tom Lewis (Sturt) and Travis Schiller (Central), the Crows have also covered their bases with the height and versatility offered by Double Blues bigman Daniel Fahey-Sparks and Bulldogs recruit Billy McCormack.
Port Adelaide has included another Magarey Medallist in former Crows midfielder Bryce Gibbs while former Power utility Hamish Hartlett, set to play with West Adelaide this year, has been included on the Covid Contingency List at Alberton.
Late off-season recruit Dylan Clarke, signed by Woodville-West Torrens from Essendon, will provide ball-winning ability if required while the class of the Menzel brothers – Daniel and Troy – is another option for Port if it requires potency inside attacking 50m.