Dear fellow Saints fans,

It is with great excitement we share the news announced by the AFL today, that Season 2020 will resume on 11 June.

Players will return to training on Monday, 18 May when they will begin working towards our first match, the details of which will be announced next week.

Strict protocols will be in place for the return to training and on match-day to ensure the threat of infection remains as low as possible.

It is important we continue to prioritise the health and wellbeing of players, coaches and the entire community.

Games without the Saints faithful at Marvel Stadium are a necessity for now, but we look forward to seeing the stands full of red, white and black when crowds are permitted to return.

Never has it been clearer that our fans are very much the backbone of our football club.

I have been incredibly proud of the response of our members over recent months, and your staunch loyalty has laid the foundation for the Saints to emerge as a competitive force in the years to come.

The Pledge campaign has seen thousands of members pledge their membership for the remainder of the year, while more than $100,000 has already been raised through donations.

Our membership retention is amongst the best in the league, proving once again the strength of the bond we share as St Kilda people.

Behind the scenes, further work is being done to drive investment in Stage 2 of our Moorabbin facility, which remains the bedrock for future success.

With that support behind us, today’s announcement is an opportunity to look forward as a club. It is a chance to start recapturing the momentum generated over the off-season and ensure we attack the remainder of 2020 with everything we have.

The appointment of Brett Ratten, the recruitment of several highly talented individuals and the promise of our emerging stars are all reasons to be optimistic about both our short and long-term future.

While we know we still need to patient as the team comes together and our young players develop, there is genuine belief that we can return to the top echelons of the ladder in the coming years.

Off the field, our focus, and that of the entire AFL industry, is on limiting the financial impact of COVID-19 as much as possible.

Unfortunately, that means a significant level of uncertainty for the majority of our staff who remain stood down or working on reduced wages.

But just as you have shown with your support, our team at St Kilda has demonstrated remarkable resilience, leadership and passion to guide us through these challenging times.

With this collective focus from our board, staff, players, coaches and supporters, I know there is so much we can achieve together.

Thank you again for your support and go Saints.