Crows, Power to fight unfair AFL sub rule

·2-min read

They're normally arch enemies, but Adelaide Crows have joined forces with Port Adelaide to express their outrage at what they deem to be unfair regulations surrounding their use of the new substitute rule.

The SANFL have forbid the Crows or Power from selecting a player in the feeder competition if that player came on as a substitute during the AFL game that week.

It means a player who comes on as the sub in the final minute of an AFL match will not be allowed to line up for his SANFL side that weekend.

The VFL and WAFL don't have such a rule, and the Crows and Power feel they have been disadvantaged by the SANFL's hardline stance.

Port Adelaide have written to the AFL about the issue, and it's expected Adelaide will follow suit.

"We support Port Adelaide with their view 100 per cent," Adelaide coach Matthew Nicks said on Thursday.

"There are 16 teams in the competition that are able to play that substitute after being activated at an AFL level, so the two of us are at a disadvantage."

"For us ultimately we're about developing our players. For a player to play five minutes of an AFL game and then not be able to get a game in at (SANFL level) that particular weekend, it puts us on the back foot.

"It hinders the development of that player, and not only that player, but also his teammates, not being able to play alongside those guys."

The Crows will be back in action on Friday when they host the Gold Coast Suns at Adelaide Oval.

The Suns were forced to fly to Adelaide on Tuesday to escape the growing COVID-19 cluster in Queensland.

Gold Coast coach Stuart Dew spoke to the players' group and their families after Christmas to tell them to prepare for a scenario like this, with the Suns packing enough gear to allow them to spend several weeks on the road.

The Suns have lost all seven of their games at Adelaide Oval by an average losing margin of 57 points and Dew is looking to turn the tables on Friday.

"It's an opportunity to tick-off a first," Dew said.

"We haven't done it yet, so it would be nice to get this one."

Adelaide have been boosted by the return of Jake Kelly after he recovered from the concussion he copped in a clash of heads with Patrick Dangerfield, while Luke Brown was also included.

Nick Murray was dropped and David Mackay was ruled out through injury.

The Suns recalled Jarrod Harbrow and Chris Burgess in place of injured pair Sam Day and Connor Budarick.