The best footballers from Australia’s emergency services and Australian Defence Force (ADF) played off at Adelaide Oval again this year as the curtain raiser to the AFL’s ANZAC commemorative round.
It was the 13th year the Australian Combined Emergency Services (ACES) played against the ADF All Stars in the ANZAC Day Challenge.
MESHA has been a proud sponsor of the ACES team since 2019, which are made up of the best police, fire, ambulance, and corrections footballers from around the country.
Associate Professor Miranda Van Hooff, MESHA Executive Director, said it was an absolute honour to sponsor the ACES team.
“They are spirited humans with big hearts and a healthy sense of sportsmanship and camaraderie,” she said.
In the lead-up to the ANZAC Day Challenge, the ACES and All Stars also played an exhibition wheelchair football match against a combined wheelchair football team sourced from the Invictus Pathways Program (IPP) and SANFL – and were joined by some Port AFWL players too.
Wheelchair football is a fast-paced and highly tactical sport with two teams of five players. The exhibition match was played at the Lights Community and Sports Centre in Lightsview. It was the largest single-day IPP wheelchair sports event undertaken in South Australia.
MESHA’s newest Ambassador, para-athlete Matt Brumby, who is an Invictus Games Captain, Gold Medallist and Iron Man World Champion, addressed participants after the exhibition match.
A combined dinner for the ACES and ADF All Stars was also held at the Keswick Army Barracks with guest speakers including Tom Clurey, Orazio Fantasia, Chad Cornes and Brett Ebert, who shared their football stories.
*Photo Credit: Jeff Wray Photography