St Kilda Football Club today announced it would honour captain Nick Riewoldt’s sister, Madeleine, against Richmond in Round 16 on Sunday July 19 at Etihad Stadium.
The inaugural ‘Maddie’s match’ was announced as the major fundraiser for the newly formed organisation Maddie Riewoldt’s Vision, which aims to raise funding, research and awareness to fight Bone Marrow Failure Syndromes.
"Maddie loved sport so it's fitting that we're able to use this game, with her two favourite teams, to promote what she loved most - family and footy,” Nick Riewoldt said.
“Watching the Saints and Tigers play is a fixture that brings our family together and we’re proud to be able to honour Maddie and use this platform to raise awareness of Bone Marrow Failure Syndromes.
"We have received an enormous amount of support as a family from the entire football community, which we’re so grateful for and know Maddie would have loved. We hope this excitement continues for Maddie's Match, and that Jack and I run out to a packed stadium on July 19th."
Five dollars from every ticket purchased for ‘Maddie’s match’ will go towards Maddie Riewoldt’s Vision and her cousin, Richmond forward Jack Riewoldt, said it was important that her fighting spirit was remembered.
"This means everything to us to be able to honour Maddie, her fight and deliver on her wish to raise awareness for Bone Marrow Failure Syndromes,” Jack Riewoldt said.
“She was a fighter and she fought every day. And now, through the launch of Maddie Riewoldt’s Vision, and through the support of everyone who comes along to this game, her fight will be kept alive."
Footy fans from both teams are being encouraged to wear Maddie’s favourite colour purple to the game, among a host of fundraising initiatives leading up to the match.
St Kilda Football Club CEO Matt Finnis said the club and its Principal partner Dare Iced Coffee would be heavily involved in fundraising activities in the lead up to the match to support the cause that had touched so many in the community.
“Our Principal partner Dare Iced Coffee is donating $10,000 to the Maddie Riewoldt Vision (MRV) and we are grateful for their donation and ongoing support,” Finnis said.
“We have felt the heartbreak that Nick and his family have endured through this tremendously difficult time and holding a match in Maddie’s honour is about making a positive difference through football.”