Gold Coast have come out on top in the bitter jumper spat with Port Adelaide after the AFL ruled the Suns can wear their home guernsey in China.
The clubs were at loggerheads over Gold Coast’s intention to wear their home jumper – that matches the red and yellow of the Chinese flag – when they meet in Shanghai in round eight.
The Power paid $500,000 for the rights to the Suns’ home game so they could host the historic clash for premiership points.
But in an oversight, that agreement doesn’t cover who wears what jumper, with the Power concerned the locals will throw their support behind the team that wears their national colours.
Port are hoping the game will be the start of a lucrative push into the Chinese market and outspoken president David Koch accused the Suns on Adelaide radio fiveAA of playing silly buggers over the issue.
Koch previously threatened to exclude Gold Coast from future matches in China and called on the AFL to make a ruling.
AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan held out hope the clubs would sort it out between themselves when he addressed the issue in March, but ultimately the league sided with the Suns.
The Power put a brave face on the setback on Monday.
“It’s not ideal but this is only a one-year agreement with the Gold Coast,” Port chief executive Keith Thomas said.
“We thought within the spirit of the commercial arrangement we had a strong case for the Gold Coast to wear their white clash guernsey but we accept the AFL’s decision and move on.
“The guernsey issue is a just a small component of a far bigger picture for Port Adelaide. This historic game is sold out, Jiangwan Stadium is going to be packed with our supporters wearing black, white and teal and we are at the forefront of the AFL in taking our game to China.
“This is going to be a truly great day in the history of the Port Adelaide Football Club and this decision on the Gold Coast guernsey will not change that.”
Port Adelaide will wear their predominantly black home jumper with white number panel.