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Sunday, July 23 2017 @ 12:15 AM ACST

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Aurrichio departs VFL for NEAFL

North America

The VFL's Northern Blues today confirmed that American Alex Aurrichio has departed the club and joined Sydney University in the NEAFL.

The statement from the Blues said "Aurrichio arrived at the club at the end of the 2014 season from the New York Magpies, making great strides in his two years culminating in a leadership group position last year."

“Alex was such a popular player for two years, everyone really respected him and admired him for his efforts — he was a consummate team man. He goes with our blessing to Sydney University in the NEAFL… our loss is their gain,” Northern Blues GM Garry O’Sullivan said.

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Mackay Shines As Draftees Sizzle



The North Queensland city of Mackay finally got to host its highly anticipated AFL match, almost a year after having had a scheduled match between St Kilda and Brisbane washed out. Instead, Harrup Park, Mackay’s AFL centrepiece, was bathed in sunshine and warm, tropical conditions to see the Gold Coast Suns take on the Essendon Bombers.

Local organisers would have been thrilled to bits to see a healthy crowd pour through the gates (official attendance not yet released) and get behind the game – an important clash in terms of keeping football of the highest level in northern parts of Queensland as well as helping grow the game at grassroots level through local clubs, schools and even just a kick in the park.
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Heritage of the Game: an American perspective

North America

We welcome our newest writer Joe Woodyard to the site. Joe is based in the United States in the state of Georgia. We hope he will become a long term correspondent for us.  His footy interests lie with the history of the AFL, it's stories, and the on-field play during the regular season. 

I like that AFL clubs do a good job of remembering their roots and telling their entire story, even if the memories aren’t as pleasant.

St. Kilda matches don’t make it to the US, at least not through my cable TV package, so I’ve been watching a season 2016 tilt with Melbourne. On the back of the Saints uniforms is an “EST. 1873,” or established in 1873, which alludes to the first year of their existence.

They’ve never relocated and granted, the majority of their footy hasn’t been of the winning type, but remembering your history and knowing where you’ve come from are both good things.

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Footy Around the World: Papua New Guinea

Oceania

papua_new_guinea_map

This profile of footy in PNG is the second in the series from Frederick Shaibani.  We recommend you check out Frederick's Blog Letters from Las Cruces to read more.  The original post for this article can be seen here.  Frederick is a member of the Los Angeles Dragons Football Club. 

Despite being very close geographically, Australia and Papua New Guinea might seem like being worlds apart in culture and lifestyle. But in the realm of sports, the two countries are very similar – Papua New Guinea’s national sport is rugby league, making it one of the few countries besides Australia to favor rugby league over rugby union.

But the country is also home to a very passionate footy community, which the locals typically refer to as “AFL” or just “Rules.”

Papua New Guinea was an Aussie territory for many years, establishing partially autonomous rule shortly after World War II, but not becoming a fully independent nation until 1975. Given these historic ties, it’s not surprising that the sport of Aussie rules has a well-established history in PNG.

Footy was first played in PNG in 1944 in the city of Lae, where a number of Australian schoolteachers and military personnel were located. Lae, the second-largest city in PNG, proved to be an ideal spot for an Aussie rules community to grow over the next few decades, as the game spread to other large cities, including the capital, Port Moresby.
 

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Bombers & Tigers Go Down Fighting



The Bordeaux Bombers and Perpignan Tigers both fought gallantly in matches on the weekend as each were determined to keep their finals chances alive. The grim reality for both is that they are both in danger of missing the finals unless their fortunes change. Both Paris teams have made late charges for third and fourth spot, so wins for both the Bombers and Tigers were as close to essential as they can get.

The Perpignan Tigers played against this season’s biggest improvers, the ALFA Lions. Played in front of the Tigers’ home crowd, both teams fought like demons to the finish line. The Tigers needed a win to stay in finals contention, whilst the Lions still have eyes on a grand final. In the end the class of the Lions shone through and they won by 17 points. Final scores saw the Lions 92 defeat the Tigers 75.
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Bulls v Dragons In Grand Final



For the third consecutive season the Dubai Dragons will meet the Multiplex Bulls in the AFL Middle East decider. For the Dragons it is a chance to take their current dynasty to an unprecedented third consecutive flag and vying for five flags in six years. The Bulls have not missed a grand final since they joined the competition for the 2014/15 season and they will be hoping for “third time lucky” when they meet the Dragons at Dubai Sports City on Thursday 9th March.

The final round of matches saw both the Bulls and Dragons do what they had to do to win their final matches. With the home and away matches completed, the Bulls went through the season undefeated with four wins. The Dragons dropped just one game to the Bulls earlier in the season. The Dingoes, Falcons and Kangaroos each finished with a win each. The Doha Kangaroos took the wooden spoon with a narrow percentage deficit.
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Great Britain add a dozen new Swans

International Cup 2017

Great Britain today added 12 more women to their International Cup squad that will play in Melbourne in August. The selections followed the successful camp held in London on the weekend and were announced on the GB Swans Facebook page.

"In association with STA Travel & LWC Drinks Ltd the Great Britain Swans are proud to bring you a new squad announcement. After an exciting selection weekend the Head coach Garth Nevin and assistant coaches Ian Mitchell, Lauren Spark and Chloe Hall are proud to announce 12 more players, who will compete in the AFL International Cup 2017 in Melbourne, Australia, August 2017."

Congratulations to the following players:

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North Melbourne women's make history with American on board

North America

North Melbourne Football Club launched their women's team at Arden St yesterday. The team was made up of ten Tasmanian women and the balance made up of players from Melbourne University Womens Football Club (also known as the MUGARS). It is an important step to what the club hopes will eventually be an AFL Women's league team.

One of those Melbourne Uni women was Katie Klatt (#19 in the picture below). Katie has come across to Melbourne in late 2016 after taking part in the AFL's Talent Identification Combine in Sydney and playing in the women's exhibition match in Sydney on the GWS team.  Prior to that Katie played with the Sacramento Suns in the USAFL and also represented the US against Canada at the 49th Parallel Cup.

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GB Swans selection weekend round up

International Cup 2017

We welcome Laura Turner (pictured below) as our newest contributor to World Footy News.  Laura is Captain of the GB Swans and England Vixens and an avid women's football fan.

This weekend 29 Women attended the Great Britain Swans Selection Weekend in London vying for the final 12 squad places for IC17. The trialists were put through their paces on Saturday with a variety of skills drills and the obligatory time trial.

The fastest women through the gates were Lisa Wilson, Danni Saulter, Laura Turner and Rose Lewis. On Sunday both teams played a practise match against a London Allstars team. In blustery conditions, not dissimilar to those the girls will expect in Melbourne the Allstars team ran out winners by 5 points.

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4 Banshees, 7 Bulldogs and 50 Hawks

International Cup 2017

With a little over 5 months until the tournament kicks off, International Cup teams continue to shape up with more announcements this week.

 The Irish Banshees this week announced the first four women chosen to represent Ireland at IC17.  Ireland were winners in the first women’s International Cup in 2011 and runners up to Canada in 2014.  The first four named are;

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Footy Around the World: Fiji

Oceania

 

We welcome new contributor Frederick Shaibani.  We recommend you check out Frederick's Blog Letters from Las Cruces to read more.  The original post for this article can be seen here.  Frederick is a member of the Los Angeles Dragons Football Club. In this article Frederick takes a look at the story of footy in the Pacific nation of Fiji.

One of the most sport-crazed countries in the Pacific, the islands of Fiji have long lacked a presence in Aussie rules football. It’s overshadowed significantly by rugby union, the Fijian national sport, but footy has made some strong gains in recent years.

AFL matches were first televised in Fiji in 2002, and the league saw that there was potential to reach the Fijian population and help establish footy as both a spectator sport and a participation sport. By 2005, the Fiji Daily Post had beat writers covering AFL games, in addition to the much more established sports of rugby union, rugby league, and netball.

Around the same time, a group of Aussie police officers stationed near the Fijian capital of Suva helped get some local athletes involved. The Aussies founded the Fijian Australian Football Association (FAFA) that year, with the goal of keeping it as the national governing body for footy. They attempted to get a national footy team into the 2007 South Pacific Games, which were being held in Fiji, but they couldn’t qualify in time due to a lack of players and funding. The FAFA went on hiatus as they attempted to organize a local competition.

 

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GC SUNS welcome Tourism Australia

Asia

Gold Coast SUNS CEO Andrew Travis today welcomed Tourism Australia’s partnership of the SUN’S game against Port Adelaide to be played in Shanghai in May.

“We are thrilled to welcome Tourism Australia as the Official Tourism Partner of the historic match between the SUNS and Port Adelaide in Shanghai,” Mr. Travis said.
 
“China is the number one international tourism market for the city of the Gold Coast, and increasingly both China and the Gold Coast enjoy a strong tourism and business relationship.
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