Rodney James POPE


Guernsey Number: 35
Career: 1974 to 1979
NFC Games: 95
NFC Goals: 5
Debut: v Sturt (Football Park) 10th August 1974
Finale: v South Adelaide (Norwood) 28th July 1979

Premierships: 1975
SANFL Hall of Fame
Best & Fairest: 1976
South Australian Games: 10


Rodney Pope was recruited, along with Greg Nicholson, from West Adelaide in 1974. Already a veteran of 209 games, Pope had begun his League career with West in 1962, and won that club's best and fairest awards in 1964 and 1968. Best remembered as a half-back flanker, he also spent time at full back.
Pope was a good reader of the play, and able to mix attack with defence. A clean ball-handler and a long kick, he was able to provide plenty of rebound from the half back line. He represented the State on 10 occasions, including two Australian Football Carnivals in 1969 (Adelaide) and 1972 (Perth).
Having joined the Redlegs in mid 1974, he won a premiership in his first full season in 1975. Pope then followed that up with a Best and Fairest in 1976, and was a member of the  triumphant 1978 Reserves premiership side.
He played almost 100 League games for his new club, and notched up his 300th SANFL League match during the 1979 season. At the end of that season, Pope retired to coach Flinders Park in the South Australian Football Association.

In 1966 and 1967 Rodney Pope served in Vietnam with the Royal Australian Army Service Corps. A player Life Member of the West Adelaide Football Club and the SANFL, he was inducted into the South Australian Football Hall of Fame in 2004. 

R Cialini June 2014

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