by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago
The SANFL recently held the annual Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Among the inductees were Port players Matthew Primus and Chad Cornes and Adelaide stars Tony Modra and Tyson Edwards. Primus and Cornes join former teammates Warren Tredrea and Josh Francou as Hall of Fame members.
Matthew Primus is the grandson of Geelong great Reg Hickey. He spent two seasons with SANFL club Norwood before being drafted by Fitzroy in 1996 and he proved to be a more than handy ruckman, playing 20 games and finishing second in the best and fairest. When Fitzroy merged with Brisbane at the end of 1996, he crossed to Port Adelaide which had just joined the AFL. He quickly became one of the most dominant ruckmen in the competition and was named captain in 2001. He won the club's best and fairest and All-Australian honors in 2001 and 2002. In 2003, he battled hamstring problems and tendinitis. In 2004, a serious knee injury put him out for the season and he missed out on Port's first AFL Premiership. He played 137 games with Port and retired at the end of 2005. He immediately took up a coaching role with the club and filled in as caretaker coach for the last seven games in 2010 after the departure of Mark Williams. He was appointed senior coach in 2011 but stepped down in 2012 after an embarrassing loss to GWS. He is now an assistant with the Suns.
Chad Cornes had been a stalwart with Port from almost the beginning. Cornes was a first round draft selection in 1997 and went on to play 239 games from 1999-2011. He quickly developed a reputation as one of the toughest players in the side and was considered the team "enforcer". He began his career as a forward, but later on switched to defense and midfield. He was a key in the club's 2004 Premiership when he restricted Brisbane forward Jonathan Brown. He retired from Port at the end of 2011 but reversed that decision to play one season with new club GWS and played a further 16 games. He was vice-captain at Port. Other Cornes' honors include: third in the Brownlow Medal 2004, second in club best and fairest 2007, All-Australian 2004 and 2007, international rules series 2002, Rising Star nominee 2000, preseason premierships 2001 and 2002, 2006 Showdown Medal (best on ground against Adelaide Crows). Cornes has remained with the Giants as an assistant coach and in a development role.
Tyson Edwards was recruited from SANFL team West Adelaide and went on to play 321 games for the Crows 1995-2010, including the 1997-98 Premierships. Although it took a bit of time to establish himself, once he did he was a mainstay in the Crow midfield. He could also push forward to be another option in front of goal. Edwards was runner up in the club's best and fairest in 2002-2003, behind Ben Hart and Mark Ricciuto. A third place finish in 2004 behind Ricciuto and Tyson Stenglein was testament to his consistency and work rate, especially in 2004 when the club was struggling. He has been a development and assistant coach with Port Adelaide since 2011.
Tony Modra was one of the glamor forwards of the 1990's. His spectacular aerial feats and goalkicking delighted fans. After an excellent 1993 season in which he kicked 129 goals, he was de-registered by the AFL in 1994 after abusing an airline hostess. Knee and back injuries troubled him in 1995, but a change of attitude and coach (Malcolm Blight) in 1997 saw a change as he again headed the club's goals list and won the Coleman Medal with 81 goals. He missed the 1997 Premiership after injuring his knee in the Preliminary Final. Poor form in 1998 saw him dropped for that year's Grand Final. He always had difficulty with being in the limelight in Adelaide and joined Fremantle in 1999 after 118 games with the Crows. His 440 goals is still a club record. In his first season as a Docker, he topped the club in goals and ran second in the best and fairest. He struggled with injuries in 2000 and 2001 and was finally forced to retire in the middle of 2001 after 47 games with Fremantle.
Other AFL people in the SA Hall of Fame are:
John Cahill - Port's first AFL coach
Fos Williams - an icon of SANFL Port Adelaide and the Power, father to former coach Mark
Mark Williams - played for Collingwood and Brisbane as well as coaching Port Adelaide
Russell Ebert -25 games with North Melbourne in 1979 but before and after his AFL stint, an absolute star for the Port Adelaide Magpies, winning the Magarey Medal (SA Brownlow equivalent) in 1971, 1974, 1976 and 1980
Craig Bradley - premiership (1987 and 1995) star for Carlton, he could easily have surpassed Michael Tuck's all-time games record had he not opted to remain with Port for several seasons. He played 375 games with the Blues 1986-2002
Bruce Abernethy - had brief stints with North, Collingwood and Adelaide in their inaugural season before returning to Port Adelaide
Scott Hodges - played 88 games with Adelaide 1991-93 and again in 1996. won the Magarey Medal in 1990
Graham Cornes - inaugural coach of Adelaide, father Kane and Chad
Neil Craig - Adelaide coach 2004-2011
Steve Kernahan - Carlton captain and president
Andrew Jarman - Adelaide
Darren Jarman - Hawthorn and Adelaide
Chris McDermott - inaugural Adelaide Crows player
Tony McGuiness - inaugural Adelaide Crows player
Andrew McKay - Carlton, teammate of Kernahan and Bradley
John Platten - Hawthorn
Shaun Rehn - Hawthorn and Adelaide
Nigel Smart - Adelaide
Source: afl.com.au, Daniel Norton, Port Adelaide Media Release, Encyclopedia of League Footballers, sanfl.com.au, AFL Record Season Guides
Article last changed on Tuesday, August 05, 2014 - 9:05 AM EDT