Dear St Kilda members and supporters,

I wanted to reach out to you in what is a very difficult time for everyone. We are obviously feeling for all of those who have been seriously impacted by this horrible pandemic. I very much hope that you and your families are staying safe and well at this time.  

And, while football is not exactly front of mind for anyone right now, I also wanted to assure you that the St Kilda Football Club is well and truly up for this fight! 

The football industry and our beloved club has not been immune to the pain felt across so many businesses and industries.

The decision to defer the AFL competition for two months is unprecedented but clearly correct. The most important battle for everyone in this country right now is to deal with this awful virus and its broader impact as best as we can. We all need to play our part, follow government advice and protect the most vulnerable members of our community.

This week has been a devastating one for the St Kilda Football Club. In line with the AFL, and every club, we have made the heartbreaking decision to temporarily stand down a large number of our staff at RSEA Park. 

As difficult as this was for our team, it was the only possible decision if we hope to overcome the enormous financial impact that postponing the season will have on the club.

Only a handful of staff, working on reduced hours, remain to support our players’ health and well-being and to lead our fight for survival.

The jobs of those stood down will be waiting for them when the Club is able to fully operate again and we will do everything in our power to support our people, many of whom have already pledged to keep on working to help the club.

It is our duty now to forge on. St Kilda has existed for 147 years and we need it to be here for many generations to come. There is too much history and too many people who care deeply about this club for us to allow any other outcome.  

And we have some unfinished business, including delivering our second flag to our deserving members.

But we need the help of our supporters more than we ever have. So many of you have already shown you intend to be there for the club. Despite the disappointing outcome on Sunday, our membership tally has continued to rise and thousands of you have sent messages of support.

Thank you for your loyalty. We are desperate to show how much this means to us once we get back on the field.

We hope to be able to provide some support and distraction to all of you through the coming months. Despite matches being suspended, we will provide opportunities for our supporters to connect with our players and each other through our website, app, email, and social media channels.

Again, I wish you all the best through the upcoming period. 

History shows us that all pandemics end at some point.  I am certain it will end, and footy will be back.

And when it does, with the support of the St Kilda faithful, we intend to emerge stronger than ever.

Take care, and I can’t wait to see you all at the footy.

Andrew Bassat