Adelaide and Port Adelaide men's and women's teams will now compete for the same shield thanks to the partnership with well-known children's charity Variety.

To be presented to the victors for the first time at Adelaide Oval on Thursday night, the Variety Showdown Shield will be the cornerstone for the biggest games in the South Australian football calendar.

The new design aims to encapsulate the community, regardless of team colours as well as Variety's core values of equality, joy, community and action as well as handprints symbolising the children supported by Variety.

Thursday's clash between the Crows and Power will be the 55th Showdown in the AFL since their first meeting in 1997.

It will also be the first Showdown played on a Thursday night and broadcast on national free-to-air Channel 7 TV.

The two teams have both recorded 27 victories in past all-South Australian clashes, adding a pleasant piece of symmetry to the upcoming game ahead of its new shield and prime-time slot.

In the AFLW, fans have only witnessed two Showdowns, with the Crows claiming victories in both.

Adelaide CEO Tim Silvers said the club was proud of the partnership with Variety.

“There is nothing quite like the Showdown rivalry which is the biggest and best in the AFL, and as we have seen over the past two years, that now extends to the AFLW competition as well,” Silvers said.

“To have a new shield that reflects the modern landscape of SA football and celebrates both men's and women's competitions is not only appropriate but exciting.

“However, as fierce as the on-field rivalry with Port Adelaide is, both clubs are united off the field in supporting the amazing work Variety does in the community and the Showdown is a great opportunity to highlight that on various occasions throughout the year.

“Variety plays a crucial role in supporting young people in need across the state and we are very proud of the partnership it has had with the Showdown since 2018.”

Variety SA CEO Mark McGill said the charity was proud of its ongoing work in the community and association with the Showdown.

“As we enter into our seventh year of this partnership, we are incredibly proud of the impact created for children in need in SA,” McGill said.

“The investment made is the catalyst for change for these kids and we remain indebted to our generous and kind supporter base as their hard work allows this to happen.”

Variety supports kids and families who are facing many challenges through sickness, disadvantage or living with disability. Its work allows kids to gain mobility and get out and about in the community, as well as communicate, achieve independence and increase their self-esteem.

Showdown key stats

  • Port Adelaide champion Robbie Gray has won the most (5) Showdown Medals
  • Former Power skipper Travis Boak has the most (30) Showdown appearances
  • Adelaide forward Taylor Walker has slotted the most goals (51) in a Showdown
  • Round 3 2017 saw a record 53,698 pack into the Adelaide Oval
  • Adelaide's greatest winning margin is 84 points in a Showdown (Round 20, 2017); Port Adelaide's is 75 (Round 2, 2020)