Vale [Donald] Neil Kerley

The West Adelaide Football Club is deeply saddened to learn of the sudden passing of [Donald] Neil Kerley. Originally hailing from Barmera in the Riverland, Neil has been involved with the West Adelaide Football Club since 1952. He was Captain from 1959 to 1962 and then was Coach in 1961 where we went on to take home the 1961 Premiership. From there Neil, went to South Adelaide, taking them from the bottom of the table to a Premiership win in just one year.

Neil returned to the Club in 1981 taking us to yet another Premiership win in 1983.  He was back again coaching in 1992 and 1993. Neil was also the State SANFL Coach in 1967, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1975, 1977 and 1978.

Amongst his other numerous achievements Neil was also appointed as the South Australian State of Origin Coach in 1979, 1980 and 1984.

He was inducted into the South Australian Football Hall of Fame in 2002 and South Australian Sport Hall of Fame in 2019.

Neil was appointed Coach and Captain of West Adelaide’s Team of the Century, having played 149 games, booting 87 goals in 1952, and between 1955 -1963.

Neil’s influence at both Club and State level was immense. He played 260 league games (149 with West Adelaide) and 32 State games which is a testament to his immense influence. Neil is a true icon of South Australian football. His passion and love for the game and his remarkable service to the West Adelaide Football Club was honoured when he was inducted as a Legend of the Club.

To honour his contribution to the Club, the Neil Kerley medal is awarded to the Best and Fairest player of the League each year.

The West Adelaide Football Club sends its deepest condolences to his wife Barb, Gail and the extended family.

Vale Neil Kerley.

Murray Forbes

WAFC President