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Summerton's ANZAC connection

ASK any footballer about playing on ANZAC Day and they’d describe it as a huge honour, but for Port Adelaide SANFL captain Steven Summerton, the occasion holds special significance.

Summerton has a long and proud family history of military service from his great grandfather serving in World War I to having four great uncles serving in World War II.

His cousin is currently a brigadier general in the Army based in Canberra.

While the 30-year-old has endured periods of turmoil in his career, including the tough times when the Magpies were split from the Power, nothing in his mind could compare to the sacrifices made by his family members and others who have served.

“I think people these days complain about how difficult their lives are sometimes but when you put yourselves in the shoes of the people that have served the country, I think that speaks volumes I reckon and you realise that life isn’t too bad,” he said.

Summerton will lead his side in the traditional ANZAC Day grand final rematch, this year played against premier Sturt.

He said he will take some time to reflect on the lives lost in battle, and the freedoms afforded to Australians because of their sacrifices.

 “I reckon if you ask any footballer out there, if they get the chance to play on ANZAC Day, on such a momentous occasion, they’re going to jump at the chance so it’s definitely a huge honour and the boys are really looking forward to cracking in,” he said.

“I’ve got a few great uncles and a great grandfather that served in World War II and World War I so it does add a bit of significance.

“There’s a bit more of a bigger build up with the pre-game.

“You know if the last post doesn’t give you tingles up the back of your spine then nothing will so, the pre-game stuff you’ve just got to soak it all in and really enjoy the moment.”

Just six Port Adelaide players who featured in the heartbreaking one-point grand final loss to Sturt last season will take to the field in the rematch on Wednesday but Summerton said that didn’t mean the club was not out for revenge.

“We definitely owe them one after the grand final last year,” he said.

“You know to get so close and not get the result that we obviously wanted, we definitely owe them one and the boys are really looking forward to hopefully turning the tables on them.

“I think there’s only a few of us left here now that played in the grand final last year so I’m sure they’ll be feeling the same way that I am, looking for that little bit of revenge I guess.

“And, the new guys that are at the club this year are looking to play their roles and get the desired result in the end.”

The best on ground will be given a medal named in honour of Port Adelaide club legend Robert “Bob” Berrima Quinn, who was awarded a Military Medal for courage, leadership and devotion.

Summerton said he was more focussed on getting a win than taking out individual honours but it would be nice to be linked with Bob Quinn’s legacy.

“It’d be a massive honour,” Summerton said

“Bob Quinn’s a massive legend of the club so I’m sure whoever wins that award on the day will be really deserving and really honoured to get that medal.”

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