Contributed by: Brett Northey
The 2005 Australian Football International Cup received much wider mainstream media coverage than it did in 2002. There was a greater awareness within the media leading into the tournament, and several nations were very adept at grabbing attention, which all helped raise the event's profile. As most of the international leagues finish off for 2005, here is a look back to the Cup as we list just a small number of the many stories from mainstream press that was also available on the internet.
Although there is some way to go for the wider Australian public to realise the true potential of Australian football as an international sport, there is no doubt they are steadily learning about the game's growth. We can all be impatient for both faster growth and acceptance, but bearing in mind that the first Cup was just 3 years ago, and many international leagues are still in their first decade, the achievements are considerable and the future bright.
Of course hundreds of people around the world are working hard on this common vision, most of them as volunteers, but friends are also needed in the mainstream media, both in Australia and in the countries developing the sport. Two notable contributors have been Tiffany Cherry and Jordan Chong. Tiffany filmed a FOXFooty documentary about the US Nationals in Atlanta in 2004 and hosted another FOX show during the 2005 International Cup Official Dinner. Jordan was seen gathering stories from most Cup matches and his reports in Melbourne's Herald Sun would have been very widely read. Whilst both are doing their jobs, they are also clearly fans and supporters of the international development of footy and contribute beyond what they have to.
It has also been said that TV reports on the Cup were more common than in the print media, with the colour and culture of the competing nations perfect for TV spots. The obvious exception was in the rural print media, which gave extensive coverage to the round of matches held at Wangaratta. Here are a selection of International Cup stories from mainstream media (no guarantees how long the links will stay live).
Aussie Rules footballers in Melbourne for the International Cup
Let the games begin...
Wangaratta charms visiting players
Aussie rules: NZ team make international final
Aussie Rules OK for Martinborough man
Falcons have chance to fly at MCG
Falcons celebrate International victory (note a small correction: 2008 is the 150th anniversary of the first recorded game, not of the VFL/AFL)
New Zealand wins International Cup
Papua New Guinea
Lions triallist Sioni helps PNG to a winning start
International Cup's Mosquitoes' chance to follow idol
Papuans' dream ends in despair
Aussie Rules Spawns Trend Bucking Samoan Fiatupu
International Cup: Irish eyes smile
Buffalo stampede in International Cup
African voices herald football's world vision
Sun's rising on new era
Japan competes in Aussie Rules international cup
Get set to yank players from US
World Footy News