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The Roar


Crows infamous pre-season camp cleared by SafeWork SA

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28th September, 2021

Adelaide have been cleared of breaching any work health and safety laws during their disastrous AFL pre-season camp in 2018.

The Gold Coast mind training camp, held months after Adelaide’s’ shattering 2017 grand final loss to Richmond, was intended to build mental resilience and take the Crows forward.

Instead, it created ructions within their squad, with reports some players had been distressed and offended by what took place during the camp.

But the Crows confirmed on Tuesday a SafeWork SA investigation found they hadn’t breached any work health and safety laws.

“The South Australian Government’s independent workplace safety regulator has cleared the Adelaide Football Club of any wrongdoing in relation to its pre-season training camp in 2018,” the Crows said in a statement.

“SafeWork SA’s comprehensive investigation, which took more than a year to complete, found neither the club nor any other person or organisation breached any work health and safety laws during or in relation to the camp.

“The club fully co-operated with the confidential investigation, voluntarily providing all information and documentation sought by SafeWork SA. The matter is now closed.”

In the wake of the camp, the Crows fell away on the field, missing that year’s finals and finishing 12th. 

They haven’t made the finals since – claiming the wooden spoon in 2020 and finishing 15th this season.


The fallout from the camp also led to an external review in 2019.

Then-coach Don Pyke fell on his sword at season’s end and captain Taylor Walker stepped down, while football manager Brett Burton and assistant coach Scott Camporeale were both sacked.

An AFL investigation in October 2018 previously cleared Adelaide of any rule breach surrounding the camp, but said the Crows should have shown greater care.