PERTH Demons will don an Essendon-inspired Anzac Day jumper for their special clash with East Perth on Thursday.
The Demons will host a twilight game that will serve as the centrepiece of WA football’s Anzac Day commemorations this year – but it’s not the first time the Demons have turned out on Australia’s national day of remembrance.
The WAFL round 4 fixture against East Perth will mark 60 years to the day from the date of the Demons’ first game, played on April 25, 1959.
Perth Football Club chief executive Marty Atkins said Anzac Day and the club milestone meant it would be a special day of football, particularly with the Demons’ flying start to the season.
The perennial underachievers are surprisingly undefeated three games in and meet an East Perth team that has just one win this year, a narrow victory over Swan Districts, while being blown away by Subiaco and Claremont in their other encounters.
With all other round 4 games to be played Saturday, no AFL in Perth and the traditional Anzac Day clash between Essendon and Collingwood earlier in the day, he said there was every chance of attracting a bumper crowd of more than 3000 people to Lathlain’s Mineral Resources Park.
Flags and memorabilia from the Victoria Park sub-branch of the RSL will be on display at the club’s pre-match function and Demons players will take part in a ceremonial flag raise, with Australian, New Zealand and Aboriginal flags to be hoisted.
“It’s very fortunate we are able to play sport on such a great day,” Atkins said.
“Anzac Day, not too much else going on the evening, plus the success of the side so far that has brought great interest and joy for loyal Demons supporters; we hope there’s a great turnout.”
Gates will open at noon and the reserves play at 1.30pm, with usual Kidzone attractions for families.
The league game at 4.10pm will be the first true test of new floodlights installed at Mineral Resources Park, which at 800 lux will be easily the brightest used at WAFL grounds.
Players have trained under the oval’s new lights for the past few weeks but only at a reduced setting.