PORT ADELAIDE is the AFL’s Saturday team in the 2018 home-and-away fixture.
The Power has 12 of its 22 home-and-away games on Saturdays — four at Adelaide Oval in the Saturday twilight zone starting at 4.05pm.
Port Adelaide’s season starts at 4.05pm at Adelaide Oval, against Fremantle on Saturday, March 24.
And the first Showdown with Adelaide will be in the Saturday twilight zone in Round 8 on May 12 starting at 4.40pm.
Port Adelaide’s fixture has delivered three stand-alone games with unchallenged national television coverage — all in sequence from Rounds 12-14.
The Power hosts AFL premier Richmond at Adelaide Oval in the first of the club’s two Friday Night Football games on June 8.
Six days later, Port Adelaide has 2016 AFL premiers Western Buldlogs at Adelaide Oval in Thursday Night Football on June 14.
And six days later, the Power puts Jack Watts up against his former Melbourne team-mates for the first time with Friday Night Football at Adelaide Oval on June 22.
Port Adelaide’s fixture includes:
DOUBLE-UP games against Adelaide, elimination final nemesis West Coast, Fremantle, Essendon and the Western Bulldogs.
A RETURN to China with the clash against Gold Coast in Shanghai in Round 9 on Saturday, May 19 followed by the bye.
SHOWDOWNS in Saturday timeslots — the first at 4.40pm on Saturday, May 12 and the second at 4.05pm on Saturday, August 4.
A FINISH at Adelaide Oval with Essendon in Round 23.
HOME matches spread across Saturday lunchtime (one), Saturday twilight (four), Thursday night (one) and Friday night (two). The Round 23 clash with Essendon is still without a timeslot.
The club has welcomed the football aspect of the fixture, describing it as “comfortable”.
“We are pretty comfortable from a competitive point of view (with the fixture),” said Power chief executive Keith Thomas at Alberton on Tuesday. “It doesn’t hold anything particularly unusual or dangerous.”
But Thomas is annoyed with Port Adelaide’s limited appearances on national free-to-air television with Channel Seven leaving the Shanghai game to the Fox Footy Channel. There are just five of the Power’s 22 home-and-away games on Channel Seven’s national coverage next season.
They are the Anzac Round home clash with Geelong, the triple-billing of consecutive home games against AFL premier Richmond, 2016 premiers Western Bulldogs and Melbourne in June and the away clash with the Western Bulldogs in late July.
“The fixture for us does not have a lot of national Channel Seven games,” Thomas said. “We do have national (sponsorship) partners who like the national free-to-air television coverage.
“We’ve always said, you have to earn that. We feel we took a step in the right direction this year. Hopefully, we will do more next year – and it will take care of itself.”
Thomas has one wish still not granted by the AFL – a home game during the Sir Doug Nicholls Indigenous Round.
“We’d love to do that here, but you can’t have everything,” Thomas said.