In 1982 the Grand Final between Richmond and Carlton was replayed at the Gabba as an official Demonstration sport of the XII Commonwealth Games. The ground was a sell out and patrons saw Richmond reverse the tables defeating the Blues by 18 points, the same margin as the Grand Final. The final scores were Richmond 28.16.184 defeated Carlton 26.10.166. Although not played with the same intensity as the Grannie Richmond played as they they had a point to prove. Maurice Rioli was Best on Ground.
Covers and Postmarks
Australia Post issued a set of four stamps and a minisheet on the 22nd of September. Shown below are the Australia Post Covers with the Australian Rules Postmark (APM12291) dated 30th September 1982.
Wesley Cover Service issued two sizes of envelopes with stylised Australian Rules Footballers, like the postmark, in the cachet.
There was a lot of emphasis on the postmarks. The above cover shows a miniaturised set of postmarks and the header shows a postcard with the postmarks on the back, Matilda and an Australia Post Miniature sheet on the front. There were 16 special postmarks
Associated with the games was the production of “deluxe laminated Edition” of postcards. There were 205 cards in the series. There was a large 185 mm x115 mm laminated pictorial card (Card No 181) followed by a series of B&W smaller cards with further information about the country or sport Cards No 182-185). The heading of the card indicated the information contained.
There was also a second set of “Commonwealth Games 1982 Souvenir Post Cards” with the same pictorial event but different header. They had no information on the back which was designed for writing and addressing the card. Different colours and headings may exist.
Sticker Stamps in four sheets were used as fund raisers. Australian Football is shown in the lower left hand corner of the initial sticker.
The games ran from the 30th September to the 9th October 1982. Australia won 39 gold medals for a total of 107. England won 38 golds and a total of 108.
Following the Commonwealth Games Brisbane hosted the Australian National Philatelic Exhibition from 11th October to the 17th October 1982 inclusive. It is not uncommon for Philatelic Exhibitions to be associated with major sports events.
The Commonwealth Games Miniature Sheet was overprinted with the event details. The official Games Cover, shown above, was also part of the covers issued for ANPEX. One of the Pictorial Tickets for the event showed the John McDonald Stand at the Royal National Association Exhibition Ground.
The Exhibition Ground was also to host a VFL premiership match, Essendon vs Geelong, as part of Round 8, 1952. All VFL matches that week were moved to country and interstate venues in an effort to spread interest in the game. Originally to be played on a Saturday afternoon, the match was rescheduled due to torrential rain. Essendon (23.17) defeated Geelong (12.14) by 69 points the following Monday night in the first official VFL match to be played under floodlights. Essendon’s Champion John Coleman kicked 13 goals. The 1950 Interstate Carnival, won by the Victorian Football League (VFL) side was also played at the ground.
It also hosted two test matches. The first was a test against England in 1928/29. It was the inauspicious debut of Don Bradman who scored 18 and 1. The Third Test of the series against the West Indies in 1930/31 was the last first-class fixture at the ground.