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  • Jason Regan

SANFL announces Russel Ebert tribute match for Riverland

A tribute match in honour of Australian Football Hall of Fame inductee Russell Ebert will be among several highlights revealed in the 2022 Hostplus SANFL League fixture later this week.

West Adelaide will host Port Adelaide in its regional recruiting zone at the Loxton Oval on Sunday, May 22, a venue that remained close to the late Ebert's heart.

The Port Adelaide champion began his junior football with the Loxton Tigers, progressing through to senior ranks before moving to Riverland rival Waikerie, after accepting a job in the local bank.

It was with the Waikerie Magpies where Ebert was recruited by Port. Ebert's two Riverland Football League clubs - Loxton and Waikerie - will clash in the curtain-raiser before the Bloods and Magpies do battle in the Round 7 SANFL clash.

''SANFL is very pleased to support this wonderful initiative which will bring together community football and the SANFL Hostplus League to pay tribute to Russell’s remarkable football career, and fittingly, where it all began at a grassroots level,'' SANFL CEO Darren Chandler said.
''Russell was a champion of the game in our state, being the only player to win four Magarey Medals.
"He made a significant contribution at the SANFL and at the Port Adelaide Football Club, after growing up in the Riverland, and his work throughout the community rivals his achievements on the ground.''

Port Adelaide CEO Matthew Richardson said the club was delighted to honour Ebert at the origin of his famous footballing journey.

''Russell Ebert was a man who loved his family, his community and his football club so we are delighted we can be part of a day like this in his honour at Loxton – a place which gave him his start in football and a place he always carried close to his heart,'' Richardson said.
''Having the Loxton and Waikerie Football Clubs playing before our SANFL match is a fantastic way to bring together the communities that were so special to Russell himself.''

The match also looms as the first occasion prized West Adelaide recruit Hamish Hartlett will tackle his former teammates, having been drafted from the Bloods by Port Adelaide in 2008.

''To celebrate the life of Russell Ebert with his family, beloved football clubs, as well as the wider Riverland community is a privilege for the West Adelaide Football Club,'' West Adelaide CEO Conny Wilson said.
''We couldn’t be more thrilled to be able to showcase our talented players to local audiences as well as pay tribute to a great legend of the game.''

North Adelaide is also preparing to hit the road against Adelaide at Bennett Oval in Whyalla on Saturday, July 16, while the State's best male and female regional footballers are gathered for the 2022 Think! Road Safety SA Country Football Championships.

To be held in Round 15 of the Hostplus SANFL League, the Roosters and Crows' match will be held in the midst of qualifying matches for the Country Championships before the finals are played at the same venue on Sunday, July 17.

A third regional match is also set to be announced within the 2022 Hostplus SANFL League fixture which will be released on Thursday.


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