1996 SANFL Grand Final
The 1996 South Australian National Football League (SANFL) Grand Final saw the Port Adelaide Magpies defeat the Central District Bulldogs by 36 points. The match was played on Sunday 6 October 1996 at Football Park in front of a crowd of 46,120. As of the 2010 SANFL Grand Final, this is the highest attendance for an SANFL Grand Final since the first year of the Adelaide Crows in the AFL (1991).
|1996 SANFL Grand Final|
|Date||Sunday 6 October 1996|
|Umpires||Richard Williams, Michael Avon, and Troy Burton|
|Coin toss won by||Central District|
|Kicked toward||North End|
|Best on Ground||David Brown|
|Broadcast in Australia|
This was Port Adelaide's 34th premiership, third premiership in a row, and seventh in nine years. Port would also go on to win in 1998 and 1999.
Port had also beaten Central District in the 1995 Grand Final. Thirteen Port players from the 1995 grand final also played in the 1996 grand final. For Central District, 12 players played in both.
Central District entered the Grand Final as favourite to win as they were minor premiers (first on the ladder prior to the finals) and had beaten Port on all four occasions that the teams had met in 1996 prior to the grand final.
Port Adelaide was captained by Tim Ginever and coached by Stephen Williams. Williams had taken over from John Cahill part way through the season when Cahill joined the newly formed Port Adelaide Power. Central District was captained by Roger Girdham and coached by Steve Wright.
The game was umpired by Richard Williams, Michael Avon, and Troy Burton.
|1996 SANFL Grand Final|
|Sunday 6 October (2:10 pm)||Central District||def. by||Port Adelaide||Football Park (crowd: 46,120)|
|Umpires: Richard Williams, Michael Avon, Troy Burton|
Jack Oatey Medallist: David Brown
Television broadcast: ABC
|P. Vardy 2
T. Cook, A, Balkwill, J. Cotton, R. Girdham 1
1 D. Smith, R. Smith
|S. Schwerdt, S. Lee, R. Girdham||Best||Brown, Francis, Hodges|
Port Adelaide entrance into the AFL
The Power's inaugural squad included no less than eight players from the 1996 Port Adelaide Magpies premiership team, including Warren Tredrea, Scott Hodges, Michael Wilson, Fabian Francis, Stephen Carter, Darren Mead, David Brown and Nigel Fiegert.
Fellow Magpies Darryl Poole (who missed the Grand Final via suspension), Peter Burgoyne, Tom Carr, Paul Evans and Jason Dylan (rookie list) would round out the homegrown picks. They would be joined by former Magpies returning from other AFL clubs including inaugural captain Gavin Wanganeen, Brayden Lyle and Shane Bond.
Central District would supply the Power with two players from their defeated Grand Final team, Jarrod Cotton and Mark Conway, and juniors Stuart Dew and Nathan Steinberner.
- The Advertiser newspaper 7 October 1996, pages 19, 20, 30