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Organisers confirm dates for IC2008
Authored by: Adam Bennett - AFL England President on Saturday, November 17 2007 @ 04:35 am ACDT

I would be very interested to find out more about any proposed plans for the Premier and Development divisions in the Cup, whether allocation will be done by AFL, recent results, past placings in the IC, or another method.

I'd like to think that teams would be given the choice to allocate themselves to a bracket, based on their own expectations and experience. If the system is implemented, the organisers may be forced to allocate teams against their wishes to have a workable spread across both brackets.

Organisers confirm dates for IC2008
Authored by: Aaron Richard on Saturday, November 17 2007 @ 07:31 am ACDT

The AFL asked leagues which they'd prefer, and conveniently it split almost
exactly 50/50 with who wanted to be in which division. This was a few months
ago, I assume that's still the planning they're working on.

This of course depends on everyone making it down, though if the regulars can
make it, plus at least a few from Tonga, Finland, Sweden, China and/or India,
Israel/Palestine, I reckon they'll get 16 at least.

Organisers confirm dates for IC2008
Authored by: Eurofooty on Sunday, November 18 2007 @ 07:00 am ACDT

The more I think about this, the more I think the idea to allow Australian based teams should be scrapped.

It could be considered unfair that a team from overseas, having in many cases invested a large amount of money and effort into getting a large squad to Australia, play against teams who are locally based, have well funded programs and development officers courtesy of the Australian Goverment (and tax payers) and receive regular access to footy resources. Perhaps if the AFL supported growth and funded countries to a more substantial degree over the long term then the playing field would be a little bit more level.

Their inclusion and the potential perception by the Australian public could dilute the spectacle as a whole and one wonders if their inclusion goes at odds to the noble "intentions" of the IC as they were established by the IAFC and AFL back in 2002 and confirmed in 2005.

If these Australian based teams desire competition, then I believe the 2008 Harmony Cup could be the more appropriate and fairer alternative.

Organisers confirm dates for IC2008
Authored by: Brett Northey on Sunday, November 18 2007 @ 02:09 pm ACDT

Do you have information to suggest the international sides would be playing against the Australian-based sides?

You refer to "well funded programs and development officers courtesy of the Australian Goverment (and tax payers) and receive regular access to footy resources". I just wanted to clarify which teams are you referring to?

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Brett Northey - Co-founder and Chief Editor of WFN

Organisers confirm dates for IC2008
Authored by: Eurofooty on Monday, November 19 2007 @ 04:30 am ACDT

Thought it is still a few months to go, I think the IC will struggle to attract 16 countries and the Australian based teams MAY be added to the "developing pool" so there is adequate competition for the lower teir nations.

"Well funded with full time officers" refers to the AFLs current corp of full time Multicultural DO's who I assume will be involved with these Australian based sides. I also understand the positions are heavily funded by the governments multicultural and integration initiatives. They were so in 2005 but however I am willing to concede that the situation may have changed.

It would be great to see the AFL take a leadership role and reciprocate these positions overseas with full time development staff. Though I have a hunch we may another decade to go before we see this in earnest.

Organisers confirm dates for IC2008
Authored by: Aaron Richard on Monday, November 19 2007 @ 03:41 pm ACDT

From our first discussion with the AFL, I got the impression that the ethnic sides would compete in the developmental division, but from more recent discussion, I gather the plan is they'll play some "friendlies" outside the points table, but against international teams.

Having said that, I think we have to wait and see how many teams there are. Either way, there are only 3 Melbourne-based community teams currently in discussions with the AFL (Sudan, Somalia and Vietnam) and I doubt they'd just play against each other.

If the Harmony Cup makes a comeback next year, I expect you would see the Vietnamese team take part in both, as might the African sides.

While I definitely wouldn't support an Italian side with Alessio, SOS etc playing in the IC, I'll reserve judgment on the all-amateur Melbourne-based teams until I know more details.

The Rugby League WC got an absolute pasting in the media for allowing a lot of Australians with very distant connections to play for other countries, but the flipside was that some such as the "Lebanese national rugby league team", started out as all Australian-based at the RLWC, but acted as a catalyst for RL in Lebanon - and from what I've heard, ditto to a lesser etxtent for Italy, Greece and Malta.

Organisers confirm dates for IC2008
Authored by: Brett Northey on Monday, November 19 2007 @ 04:59 pm ACDT

For any that may have missed it, see the update at the end of the article. I think that makes the intention clear. Whether that changes will be up to the AFL and the attending countries.

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Brett Northey - Co-founder and Chief Editor of WFN