As you know, the U3A now shares premises at Eltham Central Pavilion with Eltham Football Club, whose senior team is commonly known as the Panthers. The Panthers currently play in Division 2 of the Northern Football Netball League.
On Good Friday, 2nd April, a crowd of around 3,000, including a double digit number of U3A members, watched the Panthers beat St Marys, Greensborough 122 (17.20) to 76 (10.16) in the opening game of the season at Eltham Central Park. It was actually a relatively comfortable win, with Eltham leading throughout. Our best player was arguably Brent Macaffer, formerly of Collingwood, who played in the midfield but also scored 3 goals. The game was played according to AFL rules, so the players had to adapt to the recently introduced ‘standing on the mark’ rule which, at AFL level at least, looks like it is noticeably opening up the game.
To this observer’s untrained eye, the game looked as athletic as the AFL but with more of an emphasis on kicking rather than handballing. Somewhat surprisingly, Eltham effectively play in a Essendon strip and St Marys play in a Port Adelaide strip. Does anyone want to do some research into the question: who copied whom?