Erin Phillips tight lipped over future as Adelaide’s AFLW dynasty set to be tested by Port Showdown

As the siren sounded on a third Adelaide premiership, one word was on everyone’s lips: dynasty. 

“It’s pretty strange, [AFLW] has had five grand finals, we’ve been part of four, and won three,” captain Chelsea Randall told ABC Sport.

Strange was typically understated from Randall. 

More accurate is that it’s a record immune to superlatives.

Adelaide’s third triumph — in the final season before all 18 clubs enter the competition — definitively stamps their dominance on what will historically become known as AFLW’s first chapter.

Most importantly for the Crows’ competitors, the growth of AFLW will see the belated introduction of a Port Adelaide side, splitting the South Australian talent pool for the first time.

With an inevitable raid coming from their cross-town rivals, Adelaide’s envied culture is set to face its most strenuous test yet. 

Port questions linger for game’s greatest player

AFLW star Erin Phillips pumps her fist in celebration as she looks to the crowd after kicking a goal in the grand final.
Erin Phillips scored in Adelaide’s grand final victory over Melbourne but remained tight-lipped as to whether she would kick any more for the Crows.(Getty Images / AFL Photos: Sarah Reed)

The first and most important chess piece in this equation is Erin Phillips.

Phillips’ legacy speaks for itself: three-time Premiership champion (and two-time Premiership captain), two-time league best and fairest, two-time best on ground in a grand final, two-time club champion, three-time All-Australian… the list goes on. 

There’s nothing she has left to prove, nothing left to achieve.

Except, of course, the romance of leading the club her father won eight SANFL premierships for, the club she once said had “been my life, the life of my family.”

“I have no idea what I’m doing to be honest,” Phillips told ABC Sport in the rooms after the game.

Phillips never set out to play for Port Adelaide’s fiercest rival. 

Back in 2015 she was publicly revealed as Port Adelaide’s first “signing” (pending the club’s admission into the league).

In fact, in a press conference held for the announcement, she went so far as to say “if you cut me open, I’ve got black and white blood”.

Erin Phillips kisses the AFLW trophy
Erin Phillips once said she bled Port Adelaide’s black and white colours, but she has been and always will be an Adelaide legend.(Getty Images: Dylan Burns/AFL Photos)

The irony of the Power twice opting not to apply for an AFL license is that it has gifted the tricolours the greatest player in the history of the women’s game. 

Port’s own goal is Adelaide’s win, no matter what Phillips chooses to do next.

She also hinted that the decision may not be as simple as Adelaide or Port.

“I’ll spend the next couple of weeks just enjoying this, you know, letting the emotions come down and we’ll see what happens after that.”

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