Port Adelaide players donned their banned prison bars jumper to celebrate their latest victory but deny it was a provocative signal to the AFL.
Port Adelaide’s leaders deny sending a provocative signal to the AFL by wearing their banned prison bars jumper while celebrating victory.
The AFL banned Port from wearing the club’s historic black and white jumper, known as the prison bars guernsey, in Saturday night’s Showdown against Adelaide.
But after downing the Crows by 49 points, Port players changed into the prison bars jumper before singing their club song in celebration.
Power coach Ken Hinkley denied the move was sending a signal to the AFL.
“No, it’s a show of respect for our heritage for our past and for our great people that played in it, for our people who turn up .. and represent this footy club,” Hinkley said.
“We started as Port Adelaide and we still are.
“And part of that journey is this amazing jumper which the boys love, the club loves and everyone that supports this footy club loves.
“We had to wait until after the game but we will recognise it as often as we have to.”
Port’s former captain Travis Boak, who won the best-afield medal against the Crows for a third time in Showdown history, said the club would continue to fight to wear the jumper in games.
Port wanted to wear the jumper, which the club predominantly wore in the SANFL, in their two AFL games against home-town rivals Adelaide this season.
But the AFL refused, citing signed agreements between the Power, the league and also Collingwood, who argue Port’s prison bars jumper infringes on their trademark black and white kit.
“This guernsey means so much to our community, to our footy club,” Boak said.
“To sing the song in this guernsey is special and we were able to do that.”
Boak said donning the prison bars jumper was a “full club” decision.
“That was planned, if we come off winning, we would sing it in this guernsey and show our fans that it means just as much to the players as it does to the community,” he said.
The ex-skipper hoped club chairman David Koch would continue to fight the AFL’s decision to prevent the Power wearing the jumper in games.
“That is probably up to Kochie and the rest of the footy club to continue to fight for,” he said.
“And I know they will fight really hard because it means so much to our club and certainly the club would love to wear them again…we love this jumper and we want to wear it as much as we can.”