As the 2020 season concludes, I would like to congratulate the SANFL, all its Clubs, umpires, officials and of course the coaches and players for completing what can only be described as one of the most difficult and challenging seasons ever experienced.
I can assure all our members that we will continue to reflect, review, and make the necessary changes to improve our on-field position moving forward. Whilst disappointing to move on the senior coaching role, I would like to acknowledge and thank Jarrod Cotton for his contribution to the football club. Jarrod is a quality person, and we wish him and his family every success for the future.
There have been many promising signs including our U/18 team winning this year’s premiership. I would like to congratulate Chris O’Connor, all those players who represented our U/18 team this year and all the assistant coaches and officials for a job well done.
The last month of the playing season saw the club receive partial hand over of the new function facilities with our new offices being ready in December. We are extremely excited with what opportunities these facilities will provide the Club on several fronts. We will be able to bring all our internal functions and events back to our own Function Centre and provide an opportunity to host several internal and external events.
I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our incredibly loyal and committed staff. The Club and its administrators have been working extremely hard in what has been one of the Clubs most challenging times in history.
When the Covid pandemic hit an enormous amount of additional compliance responsibilities were required to ensure we could play matches at Coopers Stadium. Our staff were asked to take an initial 75% wage reduction, followed with a 50% reduction that continued for the past 5 months. What is most impressive about this is that in many cases these individuals were doing twice as much work as they would normally be expected to do.
On behalf of the Club, I wanted to once again take this opportunity to thank every person that has purchased a Fortis in Procella item. The Fortis in Procella program was a critical piece in ensuring our Club could continue to operate when all other revenue streams had been closed. The program enabled the Club to sell over $200K in Fortis in Procella merchandise and provided our people an opportunity to demonstrate their commitment and support for our wonderful Club.
Unfortunately, our plans to have every person who has purchased a Fortis in Procella item invited to take part in a tribute before the game could not transpire in season 2020 due to the continued Covid restrictions. We would like to have every person who has purchased a Fortis in Procella item meet on the ground prior to our home match and welcome the players onto the ground. This would also provide a photo opportunity and capture what would be a very proud moment for our Club. We certainly intend doing this next season and will need to wait for these restrictions to be lifted.
The Club would also like to thank every member who has purchased or sold a raffle ticket in this year’s Club Lottery. The Club use the annual lottery to assist in raising much needed funds to drive our junior development programs which we believe are extremely important for our communities, players and families, with a long-term benefit to the club. In advance I thank all our members who continue to support and assist with our important Club Lottery.