Grand Final 1973

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1973 Premiership Team

The Glenelg football club won its second premiership in 1973. The match between Glenelg and North Adelaide is one of the most famous grand finals. After losing only 1 game all season, Glenelg were warm favourites to take the flag. North Adelaide had other ideas and the match, played in 31 degree heat, became a classic battle.

GRAND FINAL Saturday 29th September 1973
Glenelg:   4.3 9.10 16.10 21.11 (137)
North Adelaide: 7.6 8.10 14.14 19.16 (130)


Glenelg - Voigt 7.1, Carey6.1, Sandland 4.3, Wickens 1.2, Bennett, Hamilton, Cornes 1.0, Caldwell 0.2, Marker 0.1, rushed 0.1.

North Adelaide - Rebbeck 4.1, D.Sachse 3.3, R.Robran 3.1, Marsh 2.2, Plummer 2.1, Von Bertouch, Payne 2.0, B.Robran 1.2, Stringer 0.3, Hearl 0.2, rushed 0.1.


Glenelg - Carey, Tregenza, Hamilton, Voigt, Bennett, W.Phillis.

North Adelaide - Hammond, Marsh, Howard, Stringer, Spom, Payne.

Crowd: 56,525 at Adelaide Oval.

Team line-ups


1. Peter Marker (C).

3. John MacFarlane

4. Bob Tregenza

5. Peter Carey

7. John Sandland

9. Greg Wickens

10. Rex Voigt

11. Greg Bennett

12. Graham Cornes

14. Brian Colbey

15. Peter Anderson

16. Steve Hywood

17. Kerry Hamilton

18. Craig Marriott

19. Fred Phillis

20. Wayne Phillis

21. Bob Tardiff

22. Neville Caldwell

26. Peter Millard

29. Jim Rawson

COACH: Neil Kerley


1. SPRY, J.


4. MARSH, D.

5. PAYNE, C.



10. ROBRAN, B. (VC)

12. SACHSE, N.





19. WEBB, D.

20. ROBRAN, R.

23. WILKEY, A.

26. SPORN, G.


30. SACHSE, D.



COACH: Mike Patterson

Match Report from The Advertiser

Lead by Peter Marker, Glenelg run onto Adelaide Oval before the 1973 grand final.
Peter Millard gets a kick away during the 1973 grand final.
Defender Brian Colby during the 1973 grand final.
Peter Marker attempts to evade Barrie Robran during the 1973 Grand Final.
Coach Kerly is held aloft as celebrations begin after winning the 1973 premiership.


A leap of desperation over a pack to hold a mark of rare judgement and a pressure goal from Graham Cornes in the time-on period, and the 1973 league football premiership belonged to Glenelg - the untameable Tiger.

The winning margin was seven points, as a crowd of 56,525 watched in a state of dehydrated excitement in 31 degree heat. At the time of Cornes' sensational goal which put Glenelg a point in front, North Adelaide looking almost out on its feet mid-way through the quarter, had come from 15 points down to hit the front by five points. The clock showed 29 minutes and 12 seconds. Three minutes remained. North was not prepared to compound. Three times it forced the ball forward and three times a fanatical Glenelg defence turned it back. The timekeepers had begun to toll the count down of the final few seconds when John Sandland marked. The siren button was hit for the last time as Sandland went back, took his kick and goaled. In the white-hot finish when it looked as if Glenelg, leading by 15 points, needed only one more score to clinch the issue, North full back Bob Hammond reached unbelievable heights to stop Glenelg. Time and time again he bounced out of defence to inspire his players as North cut back the deficit. Then John Plummer marked and goaled to give his side the lead. At that point 3 minutes and 45 seconds were left. It looked like North going on to its third successive premiership.

Born of desperation after 39 years without a premiership, Glenelg, fashioned and moulded by coach Neil Kerley in months of sweat, refused to buckle and in doing so went on to a well deserved victory after suffering only one loss in 23 games. If one had to pinpoint the difference between the two teams it was in goal kicking accuracy. Glenelg in the last half booted 12.1 to North's 11.6. If one individual could be held responsible for whisking the title away from North it was Peter Carey in his mastery at centre half-forward. If one player could have won the premiership for North it would have been Hammond.

It was a virtuoso display from the 19-year-old Carey. He commanded the air, handed out the ball with foot and hand and finished with six goals. In the process he outclassed a somewhat loose Neil Sachse, who moved around like a frustrated alligator unable to put anything like a bite on the youngster. With the exception of Hammond and Alan Howard the North defence at times was deplorably loose. John Robinson was the epitome of this weakness from his back pocket where rover Rex Voigt, with extreme accuracy, finished with 7. 1. Whatever the postmortems the match was the ultimate football spectacle. There were seven lead changes, all with startling rapidity, with Glenelg's 23 points in the third quarter and North's 21 points at the first change. Glenelg, which had felt severe ruck strain from the outset against Gary Sporn , began to founder when Bob Tardif was injured and in the last 10 minutes of the first quarter North kicked 5.1 without reply - four in the time-on period. Although Glenelg was to profit by the advent of John Sandland from the reserves' bench it would have been in dire trouble but for the magnificent and tireless ruck work of Bob Tregenza and rover Greg Bennett. Anything but a stylist, Tregenza's concept of the complete ruck performance is to outrage the opposition by sheer strength and at the same time set up his team mates. He did it to perfection. Despite a kink in his legs from incessant work on the ball he stayed unbowed and unbroken until the finish when he could barely crawl.

Sporn, Charlie Payne and John Plummer were the more effective combinations on the day, but Glenelg possibly got the ball clear of the diamond more often. This was largely due to the creative skills of centreman Kerry Hamilton, who in co-operation with Carey and the rovers, was the force behind Glenelg's brilliant second quarter when it kicked 5.7 to 1.4 to lead by a goal at half time.

Until the arrival of Adrian Rebbeck in the third quarter North did not have a winner ahead of centre where the Glenelg half-backs, particularly Steve Hywood and Wayne Phillis were on top. Behind them full back Peter Anderson, with some sensational leaps over Dennis Sachse guarded his goals superbly.

But because of the great roving of David Marsh, the speed and kick placement of Barry Stringer on his wing, together with Payne's straight ahead methods, North was always in touch. When Voigt potted two goals in time-on, Glenelg had kicked seven straight goals for the third quarter to start the last quarter with an eight-point break. The pair squared off for the final run home indulging in goal-for-goal for the first 15 minutes until North shot clear by five points after goals from Rebbeck, Dennis Sachse and Plummer.

But then came Cornes's leap.

See also

1. Video of last 15 minutes of this match

2. Purchase a complete copy of this match on DVD

3. Details of this match at "All Points Footy" site


1. The Advertiser newspaper Monday 1st October 1973

2. SANFL 1973 grand final Football Budget

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