Crows will again adopt anthem stare

Adelaide players will again adopt the so-called Crows stare during the national anthem before the AFL grand final.


And they couldn’t give two hoots what anyone else thinks about it.

The Crows travelled to Melbourne on Thursday, ahead of Saturday’s grand final against Richmond, adamant they were not disrespecting the anthem.

Adelaide’s players have stood in a trance-like state, staring at their opponents, during the anthem before their two previous finals this season.

The unusual stance has prompted much debate from outside the club.

But Adelaide’s chief executive Andrew Fagan puts the talking point down to one thing: an insatiable “thirst for content when it comes to the AFL”.

Fagan said the Crows stare was simply a tool for his players to deal with the national anthem.

“We want to prepare for the game, to be ready and focused,” Fagan said.

“And we have worked out something that has done that for us for the last couple of weeks.

“It’s something unusual to stand there for the national anthem, it’s not a normal preparation.

“And so you have got to come up with something that you think will have you best prepared and the guys have got that at the moment.

“What others say about it is up to them.”

Richmond assistant coach Justin Leppitsch said the Tigers are unconcerned about the Crows stare down.

“I don’t think that’s high on our agenda to look at, to be perfectly honest … we’ve probably spent more time on their ball movement and defence,” he said.

“You do what makes you feel good before the game.

“If that makes them feel good, well, good.”

The Crows travelled to Melbourne on a mid-afternoon flight on Thursday confident in their lead-in to the premiership decider.

“Although we don’t have grand final experience in the playing group, we have got it amongst our coaches,” Fagan said.

“And that has been one of the messages to the guys … embrace the week.

“It’s not a normal week … but equally you have got to try and stick to your normal structures and personal preparation.

“And I am really confident we have got the balance right and we will be ready to go on the weekend.”