To enhance interest in the fortunes of the GB Bulldogs team for this year’s IC17 in Melbourne, the following list has been prepared to list all players to have had the honour of representing the Great Britain team. The following list is from the www.aflengland.org website.
The Great Britain Bulldogs have been involved in International Competition since 2001 and we’ve been trawling through the records to put together a full list of players who have competed for the Bulldogs in that period of time. With records going back to the AFL International Cup of 2002 below are the players who have represented their nation across time
In one of the closest ever battles to reach finals in AFL Middle east history, the Multiplex Bulls are the first team guaranteed to play in this season’s decider. The competition returned from its winter break with a double header with the top four teams in battles which would possibly decide their 2016/17 fate.
The first match saw a rampant Dubai Dragons go within an ace of guaranteeing their grand final spot when they downed the Abu Dhabi Falcons. Going into the match, both teams were in the mix, but the falcons are now out of contention with just one win from three matches and a poor percentage. The Dragons would have to be incredibly unlucky to fall from second place with a big percentage boost making them very nearly safe.
Final score: Dubai Dragons 17 10 112 d Abu Dhabi Falcons 4 8 32
After successive years being held in the tropics of Queensland, this year’s National Diversity Championships will move to western Sydney. Blacktown will become the hub of entertainment after Townsville hosted the event in 2016 and Cairns in 2015. It is the first time the event has been in New South Wales since being held in Coffs Harbour in 2014.
According to the http://www.afl.com.au website, “the National Diversity Championships encompass the National U15 Kickstart and the National U15 All Nations Cup. The 2017 National Diversity Championships will be held in Blacktown, Sydney from Saturday 8th to Thursday 13th of April.”
“The championships provide the pathway into our Flying Boomerangs and World Team programs.”
(Picture: Western Australia took out both titles in 2016)
Naomi Ackerman has reported on the Evening Standard website the “clamour to join London teams as hard-hitting game soars in popularity”. With the inaugural AFL Women’s league competition about to kick off in Australia on February 3rd when Carlton and Collingwood play the historic opening match, women’s footy is set to explode further across Australia and the world, and this article reflects that growth with a look at the growth in the game being experienced across London.
It is not a sport for the faint-hearted — but that appears to be the attraction as London women sign up in their droves to play Aussie rules football.
The game, which involves full-body tackles and running for about nine miles in a match, has been played by men in Regent’s Park for more than 25 years but now it has soared in popularity among women who “enjoy a bit of rough and tumble”.
Late last year the ABC reported about a young girl in Toowoomba who was taking Australian Rules football by storm, and in the process taking apart cultural and gender stereotypes to be an amazing role model and inspiration for all young, aspiring football players. Here is the story of Zimra, as reported by Allyson Horn for the www.abc.net.au website.
Ten-year-old Afghan refugee Zimra Hussain is tearing up football fields across south-east Queensland, her hijab flying in the wind.
Zimra and her family are part of the Hazara, a group heavily persecuted in Afghanistan by the Taliban.
They arrived in Australia in 2014.
She played her first game of football less than a year ago, as a new resident of Toowoomba on the state's Darling Downs.
Nick Bowen from the www.afl.com.au website reports that Essendon’s legendary coach has taken the initiative to push for his club to pursue an AFL match in India. With former head of football in India, Sudip Chakraborty, now at the club, there is a real possibility that the club could link with another to bring a match to the nation sooner rather than later.
KEVIN Sheedy will lead a contingent of Essendon officials to India as the Bombers seek to tap into the growing Indian community around the club and, longer term, eye hosting an AFL game on the subcontinent.
The Bombers' party will fly to Kolkata, the capital of West Bengal, where they will attend the Indian AFL national championships, after which Sheedy will select the team that will represent India at the International Cup in Melbourne from August 5.
With less than a year to go until the next International Cup in Melbourne, nations are already making provisions to assemble lists and support personnel ready for the event. The GB Bulldogs provisional first list has just been released. Whilst predominantly made up of players in the AFL London and AFL Central & Northern England competitions, the list is also represented by players from Wales and Scotland.
Also featured are players now playing overseas in the Netherlands and Australia. Included in the list is Sam Willatt who will bring his experience to the squad after having been a part of the AFL’s Western Bulldogs/Footscray (VFL) powerhouse, with both winning flags.
But what about the rest of the world? If the Rest of the World were to play against any of the teams above, what is the best team they could muster? We have determined eligibility along the line of the International Cup eligibility rules and we have named the 2016 World Team (so this does not include foreign born but Australian raised players).
Irishman Pearce Hanley has been named captain of the 2016 team despite what was perhaps a below par year by his standards at the Brisbane Lions. He will of course hope to return to form in 2017 with his new club the Gold Coast Suns.
As with the International Cup the coach can be Australian but should have a strong link with international football. This year we have selected the coaches of the Indonesian Garudas that won the Indochina cup against China and Indochina in Vietnam.
In addition to those currently on AFL lists (including International Scholarships) we have named the o'hAilpin brothers who have dominated for a third year running in the Ovens and Murray Football League (and were formerly on AFL lists). Mick Finn the Irish International Cup captain continued his great form for Heidelberg in the Northern Football League in their premiership season and again has been selected. Also among the emergencies named are AFL Europe players Mikkel Kjoege, Sam Willatt and Josip Habljak who all made state league lists in Australia in 2016.
This team is intended to be an annual announcement, you can see last year's team here.
In a move which will see our great game reach more casual Chinese viewers than simply the attendance at the game, the AFL is negotiating with local Chinese broadcasters. It is hoped that the Gold Coast versus Port Adelaide match might attract an even larger market which, in turn, gives greater opportunities to grow the game in China. The following article from Matt Thompson at www.afl.com.au looks at this development for the historic game next season.
CHINESE broadcasters are in talks with the AFL to telecast next year's premiership season game in Shanghai to the local population.
Gold Coast and Port Adelaide will face off at the Jiangwan Sports Centre in round eight on Sunday May 14 in the first home and away game to be played in Asia.
The fortunes of the Irish men’s and women’s squads for the upcoming IC17 tournament in Melbourne next August are already on the rise with their announcement last month of the men’s Warriors squad. Selectors and team officials will continue to fine tune the squad over coming months in preparation. The women’s Irish Banshees squad will be announced in due course.
The Irish Warriors management team have today named an extended Ireland based training squad for the 2017 AFL International Cup. More players may be added in the weeks ahead depending on performance in the Winter Championship and arrangements are also being made for UK and Australia based players to train and have trials and these will be announced in the coming weeks.
After debuts by India at IC08 and then Pakistan at IC14 their Sri Lankan neighbours could be next to make their International Cup debut. A talent search and fundraising effort to bring a team from Sri Lanka to compete in the 2017 AFL International Cup is underway.
The organisers were recently interviewed on Channel 31 in Melbourne on the Sri Lankan Morning Show. They have conducted clinics in Sri Lanka to find the talent to fill out their team and have been assisted by players from Essendon (Courtenay Dempsey) and Carlton (Ed Curnow, Harry McKay and Jesse Glass-McCasker).