Former St Kilda president Andrew Plympton (left) with Brian Sierakowski in Melbourne on September 12, 2013. Picture: AFL Media

AFL CHIEF Executive Officer Andrew Dillon today said football mourned the passing of Andrew Plympton AM, and would remember him as a vibrant leader who had made a considerable contribution to the St Kilda Football Club. 

Plympton, a world-class competitive sailor who won the World Championship in the Etchells class, passed away in hospital in Melbourne over the weekend, having fought hard against lung cancer in recent months.

Plympton led the Saints from 1993 to 2000, overseeing the club’s move from Moorabbin to Waverley at that time. He turned around the club’s financial fortunes off the field and the Saints' appearance in the 1997 Grand Final was the first occasion it had reached a Grand Final since 1971. 

Separate to an extremely successful business career, sporting career on the water and his time with St Kilda, Andrew also served on the Australian Olympic Committee for eight years, was President of Yachting Australia, was a Commissioner of the Australian Sports Commission and was a Board member of the Sport Australia Hall of Fame. 

Andrew Plympton served as St Kilda's President from 1993-2000, leading the Save Our Saints campaign in 1995. Picture: St Kilda FC

Dillon said Plympton was a pivotal figure in turning around the fortunes of the Saints, after the club had struggled for long periods, and he was always an engaging and committed fan of both the club and the wider game.

"In October last year, the AFL gathered together long-serving former AFL Commissioners and Club Presidents to thank them for their service, and it was a delight to see Andrew once again holding court among the game's leaders.

"His passion for the Saints was undimmed and the AFL wishes to formally acknowledge his tremendous service to the club and the game at a time when things were very difficult for the Saints, and he ensured their ongoing survival in the competition.

"On behalf of the Commission and the AFL, we extend our sincere condolences to his wife Kim, daughters Amanda and Katrina and all his many friends and colleagues."