President Jeff Kennett has penned the below letter to members...

Good morning my friends,

Well, the playing season for our team is over.

The last few weeks might be described as bittersweet.

We played so well, having won four of our last six games, but we did not win enough early in the season to make the final eight. 

It is said in life you need a little luck, but it is better to make your own luck rather than relying on someone else to fail. 

For us to have made the eight this year we needed the Western Bulldogs to be beaten yesterday by Adelaide. Our entry into the eight was not in our hands. 

That said, we finished the year in an exciting fashion and I am equally excited by our prospects next year. 

On Saturday night our victory over the Eagles in Perth was comprehensive. The team played well for four quarters. The tackling was fantastic. We celebrated Isaac Smith’s 200th game and he played perhaps his best game of the season. 

Our young players have shown promising credentials this season, this talent paired with our more experienced players like Ben McEvoy give confidence that 2020 will be an exciting year for Hawthorn. On McEvoy, he is a player who I never think gets the recognition and credit for the great game, with strong and reliable hands, that he constantly delivers.

Can I just thank our army of members in WA who turned up in droves on Saturday night at the game. I spoke to many of you, we do not take your membership for granted and thank you for your ongoing support. There were also a few who made the trek from interstate so again, my thanks. 

While the playing season has finished for our AFL team, the work of the coaches and recruiting team continues. I am sure, as always, there will be some surprises in this area, so watch this space. 

That said, our VFL team has made the eight, in eighth spot. This is where they finished last year, and from there they went on to win game after exciting game to win the Premiership. Let’s hope they can do the same this year.

Of course, they will need our support and their first game will be against Werribee next Sunday 1st September 2019 at 2:10pm at Adcon Stadium (North Port Oval).  I hope as many of our members as possible can attend the game to lift our boys to victory.

After winning the premiership in our first year in the VFLW, our second year has proved more difficult. It will only get more difficult next year as the AFLW season is extended, making it harder for us to retain our players. Yet another challenge. 

We will keep advocating for Hawthorn to field an AFLW team. We are yet to receive any further clarification on the timeline for our entry into the AFLW, this is something we will continue to lobby the AFL strongly on.

To not be given a clear timeline, is to me, absolutely discriminatory and disadvantages Hawthorn in so many ways. The most obvious being that not only are female players discriminated against but so are our thousands of members who cannot support a Hawthorn AFLW team.

The Board and administration will continue to press the AFL for earlier entry for Hawthorn to field an AFLW team.

Just on the matter of our presence in Tasmania, let me state Hawthorn’s position.

The Tasmanian Government has established a committee under Brett Godfrey to examine whether Tasmania should or could have its own AFL team.

The Club and myself and CEO Justin Reeves have been meeting and co-operating with the Tasmanian AFL taskforce, chaired by Godfrey, on several occasions.

We have said we will co-operate with whatever the taskforce decides.

It is Hawthorn’s desire to remain in Tasmania but if the powers that be, the Tasmanian Government and the AFL, want to establish and fund a Tasmanian team we will respect that decision. 

We will make no decision until the taskforce’s report is handed down and released publicly. 

So, life goes on. A lot of work over the next few weeks, and then season 2020. I will keep you informed of developments that affect the club.

Thank you for your continuing support.


Jeff Kennett