The following article appeared on the AFL Footywild (South Africa) website, contributed by Tom King at K-ROCK Football. It tells the fascinating story of the experiences of the Geelong based St Mary’s football team, a member of the Geelong Football League, and their recent experiences on a trip to South Africa to play footy.
The article clearly shows that whilst football is the vehicle by which these young players take their opportunity, it is the life experiences on their journeys which are most profound and often life-changing.
“(It’s) about getting the kids to a different environment and culture, and understanding how lucky they are to live in Australia.”
Nakia Cockatoo has been snapped up by the Geelong Cats in tonight’s AFL Draft, held on the Gold Coast. The powerful midfielder, originally from NTFL club Southern Districts has been touted as a mid to late teens draft selection, but the Cats pounced early selecting Cockatoo with pick 10 in the draft.
Having lost young speedsters Travis Varcoe and Allen Christensen during the trade period in October, Geelong has grabbed the opportunity to snare the young Northern Territory talent. The following is an excerpt from the AFLNT review of tonight’s draft:
The following media release from the AFLNT details the exponential rise in women’s footy across the Northern Territory and initial ideas to accommodate that expansion into the future. This rise in in keeping with increases nationally in the numbers playing women’s Aussie Rules, and the AFLNT have identified this increase and are working towards solutions.
Rapid growth and clubs calling for greater division of the Youth Girls TIO NTFL competition has prompted AFLNT to seriously consider a 2015-16 expansion plan.
In just two short seasons since 2012-13 the division has grown from 3 teams playing nine-a-side to eight teams playing 15-a-side as per the playing rules set by the AFL.
Many teams have up to 24 players listed on team sheets each week, meaning clubs are at stretching point to accommodate the growing number of eager under 16 girls.
AFL Footywild have recently reviewed their 2014 season, and this article from their own website lists their achievements for the year. In a season which saw improvement on a number of fronts, there were two areas in particular which illustrated the success well. The South African team performed admirably at the International Cup in August, reaching the semi-final stage and finishing in fourth place overall.
Additionally a number of new teams were created and formed a National Premier league, a step towards higher performance and greater opportunities. The teams featured are the four key Australian Rules football playing provinces – Super Owls and Warriors (Gauteng), Nyanga Bluebirds and Khayelitsha Divines (Western Cape), Wild Cats and Platinum Buffaloes (North West) and Giant Bees and Hurricanes (KwaZulu Natal).
he Sydney Swans have just signed a 30 year deal to play all their home games at the SCG, the spiritual home of football in Sydney. That completes a cycle that has seen cricket and football re-unite at major stadia around Australia. Whilst organised football was still only played in English schools, football in the Australian and New Zealand colonies was played by communities.
There was a great synergy between cricket and the new evolving football. In fact it has been reported that football was invented to keep cricketers fit during winter. Cricket had already established community clubs. They had the grounds and the facilities whilst football provided the crowds and a major source of income. Together large stadia were built in the cities and throughout the lands. Playing in complimentary seasons it was an almost perfect relationship until with the booming popularity of both codes they thought they could do it better separately.
With the only way to underwrite large modern stadia by code-sharing, common sense has prevailed and we have seen major developments at shared grounds throughout Australia and the decommissioning of AFL grounds. This investment in infrastructure has been repaid handsomely in increased attendances . The Adelaide Oval being a spectacular example of that.
The following article is from the website of AFL Asia, detailing the efforts of the Jakarta Bintangs to win the SEAFL Championship for 2014.
For the second year of the SEAFL (South East Asia Football League) Championship, the Jakarta Bintangs have claimed the title for the second time.
Going into November’s Asian Championships, the Bintangs were undefeated.
The Bintangs were cleaning up everything in their path whether at home or abroad. Scalps included the Singapore Wombats in Singapore and the Vietnam Swans in Vung Tau, Vietnam, at the Annual ANZAC Friendship Match. Unfortunately for the Bintangs, the Champs were less successful than they might have expected – but those games were outside the scope of the SEAFL.
After launching the American Footy Star reality TV and footy conversion program for Americans in 2010 to much fanfare only to see the project shelved, it looks like the creator Miro Gladovic is dusting it off for another run.
The 2010 version came complete with a Hollywood launch party and signup details for camps across America in a reality TV format that would have an American chosen and brought to Australia attend the AFL Draft Camp and to be hopefully signed with an AFL club. That version came complete with a video of Andrew Demetriou giving his blessing to Gladovic.
Back in 2010, Geelong's Jimmy Bartel, Australian Institute of Sport coach Jason McCartney and Hawthorn legend Robert Dipierdomenico were tied to the project. But the American Footy Star camps never eventuated most likely due to the show not attracting interest from buyers willing to run the concept on TV in the US.
Such a glittering array of international cities could potentially play host to International Rules matches if Alastair Clarkson’s push gathers any steam. If “The Big Apple’ can be considered a potential host city, as well as Boston, then other cities across Ireland and Northern Ireland, such as Belfast and Cork, could equally be considered. The Australian coach has ignited discussion about the future International Rules venues, but the debate is as young as the renewed interest in the game. The following is an excerpt from an article on the afl.com website, written by Alex Malcolm.
(Left: Australian Coach, Alastair Clarkson)
Following the success of the one-off Virgin Australia International Rules Test in Perth, the concept is ready to be unleashed on New York or Boston, Alastair Clarkson says.
Australia's victorious coach was adamant the series was well enough established to warrant taking the concept to the United States as early as next year.
Australia won the Cormac Mc Anallen Trophy in front of a sellout Patterson’s Oval by a 10 point margin. It was a welcome and highly successful return to International Rules football in Perth leading to unanimous calls for the competition to return to a two game series. Both the Australian and Irish contingent suggested it would be more satisfying and also fairer on the visiting team. Calls for the game to be taken to New York and Boston were greeted with enthusiasm by the Aussies but with less enthusiasm by the Irish.
The game had all the trappings associated with an international contest. On a somewhat balmy evening the towering lights of Subiaco highlighted the colour of the twilight game. Many Aussies joined the Irish fans in the pre-game buildup to provide a party atmosphere perhaps primed by the Irish Festival outside the ground. It was a complete success judging by the length of the queues for food and drink. The large crowd outside the ground streamed in late oblivious to the band Pseudo Echo playing inside.
There was a great deal to like in tonight’s International Rules test match between Australia and Ireland in Perth. The 10 point result would have pleased Australians, as would the huge Paterson’s Stadium crowd. No doubt the Irish fans, whilst disappointed by the result, would have seen something special in the team’s comeback and some outstanding individual performances.
But, from my vantage point I saw one outstanding aspect. Is Dustin Fletcher a new national sporting legend?
To put this question in some sort of perspective, Fletcher was not Australia’s best player tonight. Luke Hodge and Sam Mitchell were outstanding, as was Nick Reiwoldt. Conor McManus was Ireland’s best, but I did like some of the work from David Moran and Mattie Donnelly as well as former AFL player Colm Begley.
After an entertaining season in Christchurch in which all four Clubs recoded a win in the 9 rounds, the Mid Canterbury Eagles (2 wins) played the Eastern Blues (7 wins) in the Preliminary Final. It would have been a real surprise if had not been the Eastern Blues victorious, ready to challenge the Christchurch Bulldogs (8 wins) for the 2014 Flag.
Though the Canterbury finals were affected by player unavailability due to University examinations the Blues v Bulldogs Grand Final was a fitting end of season spectacle. The Blues hit the game in peak form with 2014 International Cup players Logan Toomer, Dan Benny and the hirsute Jared Court to the fore in the Preliminary. Another to star was the brilliant James Bowden, one of NZ’s flashier and more exciting players at the inaugural International Cup in 2002, who is still a very fine footballer.