The Australia Network provides Australian TV content into Asia (on satellite/cable TV) much the same as Radio Australia does with radio content. It is a government program that has been provided by the ABC but with programs from across the Australian TV networks. On weekends this extends to coverage (often live) of AFL matches. This provides a strong link and easy access to the game for homesick expats but also a window into the Australian game for many Asian locals who have an interest in the game.
With a number of junior programs being conducted by footy clubs across Asia, other than playing the game there is no better way to give these kids an appreciation of the game than by being able to show them footy beamed live from a packed MCG, Footy Park or Subiaco. Developing links with the local community can also be based on gatherings around the TV particularly on Anzac Day and for the AFL Grand Final when many are introduced to the AFL for the first time.
This is however all under threat with the current 10 year deal set to expire at the end of August and the winner of the next 10 year tender, is yet to be announced by the Departmentof Foreign Affairs & Trade. According to AusNet's CEO, Bruce Dover, "DFAT has indicated in the associated tender documents that in any case in thefuture, sports programming on the channel should be limited, as 'much of the Sports [football] historically shown appeal more to the expatriate community rather than the target audience.' Consequently, sports programming - be it NRL, rugby or AFL - will be significantly restricted on the channel after August 2011."
We've had some comments and links regarding Ugandan sensation Emmanuel Irra but it's worth noting his rise as a separate article. He first came to our attention last year as a 16 year old when he was selected for the World XVIII to compete in the NAB AFL Under 16s.
Irra made his league debut for South Adelaide a few weeks ago, a remarkable effort at 17 years of age, with only a brief history in the game. Irra is playing some exciting footy and must surely be on the cusp of being drafted into the AFL. With so many young African immigrants in Adelaide playing soccer Irra's success could be a strong positive for footy winning over the next generation. And of course if he makes it to the AFL he could have a similar national significance, as well as continue to highlight the benefits for the AFL of a push into Africa.
Some of his highlights have been posted on Youtube:
Team India are holding weekly training sessions in Melbourne in the lead-up to this year’s International Cup. Sessions commence at 1pm every Sunday at Ashwood Reserve on High Street Road in Melbourne’s East.
All Indians in Melbourne that are interested in playing football are urged to attend, regardless of their skill level or knowledge of the game. Non-playing roles are also available.
Like in 2008 Team India will be comprised of eligible players based both in India and Australia; an even split is expected. In 2008 the India-based players were drawn solely from Kolkata, whereas this year players from Mumbai and Kerala are also trying out for the squad. Hopefully this expanded talent pool results in India securing their first victory at an International Cup.
The Madrid Bears defeated Belfry Valls by 62 points last weekend, in the first ever match to see a Catalan footy club travel to the Spanish capital of Madrid.
Instead of playing a three-way tournament as planned, the Belfry Valls squad combined with members of the Móstoles Kangaroos. The first two quarters were hard-fought, with the Bears holding more possession of the ball but the Catalans' greater accuracy in front of goal kept them in the game, only trailling by 11 points at half time.
The second half saw the Bears pull away from the Catalans, eventually running out 116-54 winners.
The Bears are planning to organise an international tournament in June to promote Aussie Rules in Spain, in addition to a promotional event on May 28th to recruit more players and find a sponsor for the national team.
Besides preparing for the Euro Cup over the northern summer, the Bears are planning to play a match against Portugal's Lisbon Dockers and visit Catalonia for a rematch later this year.
There are currently three AYAD positions available for Australian football development roles, in Indonesia, Vanuatu and Tonga. The youth ambassador positions are paid jobs open to Australians to assist in overseas development.
Round 1 of the Foxtel Cup, a designed for TV competition between the top Australian state league teams, has completed with no real surprises.
The knock-out matches are played as curtain-raisers to AFL games. 16 clubs from 7 states and territories are competing, with the first round featuring 8 games spread across March, April and May. The results from Round 1:
Northern Territory Thunder (NT) defeated Morningside (QLD) by 15 points
East Perth (WA) defeated North Ballarat (VIC) by 2 points
Williamstown (VIC) defeated Swan Districts (WA) by 37 points
West Adelaide (SA) defeated Ainslie (ACT) by 77 points
Claremont (WA) defeated Clarence (TAS) by 71 points
Northern Bullants (VIC) defeated GWS Giants (NSW) by 89 points
Port Adelaide Magpies (SA) defeated East Coast Eagles (NSW) by 92 points
North Adelaide (SA) defeated Labrador (QLD) by 85 points
The Oslo Crows, Norway's oldest Australian rules football club, opened their account for 2011 with wins against Western Sweden's Göteborg Beserkers and Karlstad Eagles in a three-way tournament held in Göteborg last weekend.
After arriving into Göteborg to see the tail end of the match between the two Swedish opponents, the Crows scraped a 3-point win over the Beserkers, then saw off the Eagles by 18 points.
The AFL Sweden West will this year see Oslo, Karlstad and Göteborg clash on three occasions during 2011, with each club hosting the other two for a triple-header.
The Crows' next fixture will be against the Ås Battlers on May 28th, the first Norwegian domestic match for the year. Oslo will also play a home-and-away fixture against the world's most northerly footy club Tromsø this year, marking the first time the northerners have played a match against outside opposition.
On an international level, the Norway Trolls national team will be heading to Reykjavík on September 10th for their first clash with the Iceland Ravens, and have been mentioned by the EAFA / AFL Europe on the list of possible debutants at the Euro Cup in Belfast on October 8th, along with Portugal and Poland.
The Bordeaux Bombers are French Premiers for the 2010-11 season, after they defeated the Toulouse Hawks 77-52 in the Grand Final tournament held in Perpignan last Saturday.
The Bombers had finished top of the northern league, winning the right to take on the Hawks, who had topped the southern division.
The northern clubs continued their dominance in the other matches of the day, with the Paris Cockerels defeating the Aix-Marseille Dockers 171-38 for third place, and the Strasbourg Kangourous defeating the hometown Perpignan Tigers 178-66 to avoid the wooden spoon.
A full report of the Grand Final tournament will be available soon, but in the meantime the French national team is preparing for their first 18 a side international test match, to be played against Germany in Paris on June 11th. The clash against the Germans will be a prelude to their first International Cup campaign in Australia in August.
One of the world's oldest non-Australian football competitions is underway for 2011. This Japan AFL season features six teams playing five rounds plus finals. Given the Earthquake and Tsunami that devastated the country earlier in the year, it's impressive that apart from a struggle for sponsors, the season was launched without issue.
Burley Sekem have an international package available for countries competing at the 2011 Australian Football International Cup. Interested nations can check out the deal here. [For transparency please note that Burley Sekem advertise with worldfootynews.com]
Shane Savage fromHawthorn Football Club is the Round Eight NAB AFL Rising Star nominee.The 20-year-old New Zealand born midfielder played his best match for the Hawks with a career-high 26 disposals, 14 marks, five tackles and two goals in the 30-point win over St Kilda at the MCG on Sunday.
Shane debuted for the Hawks in 2009 and played the last three matches of the home and away season. Despite being named as an emergency eight times in 2010, he made no senior appearances. In 2011 Shane has now played in all eight matches for the Hawks.
AFL “F” is a new organisation which has been established to help support the growth and development of women in Australian Football both in Australia and Internationally. It is founded on the ideas and collaborations of individuals and organisations with a passion for female sports, but aims to have the financial freedom to invest in and support the growth of women’s football around the world.
AFL “F” stands for much more than just female football players: In addition to the “Chick-kick” girls, Youth Girls, Women’s seniors and female coaches who bless our game with their efforts and achievements each weekend, there are increasing numbers of female umpires, administrators and operational staff as well as girlfriends, wives, mothers and daughters who all have an important and often unseen impact on the game.
Each month, AFL “F” focuses on a new “F” word and this month’s word is “funding”. They’re trying to develop some new and exciting funding initiatives to help create more opportunities for women to get involved in football. If you want to be a part of their global female football community and have an idea, skill or product that you think will support women in football, then tell AFL "F" about it by contacting them at email@example.com.
AFL “F” is also putting together a “telemovie” of women involved in Australian Football around the world. The video will be distributed to domestic and international leagues to promote female participation in Australian Football. If you have a story which you would like to share with the female football world, please contact AFL “F” at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their YouTube channel - here.
For more information on AFL “F” please visit their website - aflf.com.au or better still, join them on Facebook here.