Immersed in his role as leader of the Adelaide mob, Eddie Betts rates the AFL’s indigenous round as equal significance to a final.
The brilliant forward and his Crows teammates will wear a jumper designed by his aunt as the AFL celebrates indigenous influences in round 10.
“It’s very spiritual and it has got a lot of healing as well,” Betts said of the jumper for the Crows, who have dealt with deaths of coaches Phil Walsh and Dean Bailey in past years.
“What the club has been through in the last three years, I’m glad that she put a lot of healing through this jumper because I think this club needs a little bit of healing.”
Betts said this weekend’s round carried utmost importance to indigenous players.
“It is fantastic round. It’s a round that I would love to play in other than the grand final – if we make the grand final,” he said.
“If you ask all the other indigenous guys around the league, this one of the games that they would love to play in.”
Betts’ Aunt Susie, a prominent artist, designed Adelaide’s jumper for a home match against Greater Western Sydney with other clubs also wearing indigenous-themed strips.
“All the other jerseys around the league, it’s a different story, different artist and you learn a lot,” Betts said.
The 29-year-old is self-appointed leader of Adelaide’s indigenous AFL players, particularly those at the Crows.
“My house is open to all indigenous boys here, they’re around three or four times a week having dinner,” he said.
“I just want to make them feel at home and not get homesick.”
Betts insists it’s a two-way deal: the players get a feed, but also change his children’s nappies.
“They babysit for us, change nappies, they help us more than what we help them,” he said.
Betts said the indigenous crew were on cooking duties at the Crows on Wednesday.
“We’re cooking up some kangaroo stew, some damper … hopefully it won’t be too yuck for them,” he said.