The AFLPNG Kurakums, the national under-16 Girls team, will arrive home this week as the Queensland State U16 Girls Champions. They did not lose a game throughout the tournament and the only opposition side to score against them was the other Grand Finalist, Cape York.
In only their second attempt the Kurakums have surprised the AFL fraternity in Queensland by dominating the Under 16 National Championships. Their domination was evidenced by the selection of nine PNG players in the Queensland All Stars Team.
The Collingwood Football Club opens the 2008 NAB Cup pre-season tournament against Adelaide in Dubai on February 9th. The club's website is now calling for its supporters to join them in the journey to the Middle East. The details follow:
Collingwood Football Club and Emirates Airline are delighted to announce a series of special travel packages for Collingwood supporters who wish to experience the first ever official AFL blockbuster to be played in the Middle East!
Collingwood Football Club will play the Adelaide Crows in an official NAB Cup Match in Dubai on Saturday 9 February 2008.
The match will be played at the famous Dubai Polo and Equestrian Club amidst a carnival of events.
Travel Packages have been designed to include a range of options for Magpie supporters.
All packages include luxury accommodation, transfers, tickets to the game, an official supporters function with the CFC players and coaching staff, official supporters merchandise pack and a range of special Arabian experiences!
Contact Pie in the Sky Travel to find out more.
Email one of our friendly team members: pieinthesky at pieinthesky.com.au or call (03) 8412 0100 (within Australia)
The wave of recent Irish recruits to AFL clubs have begun arriving in Australia for pre-season training. Although mainstream Aussie media has been slow to pick up on the development of Australian Football internationally, because the men from Ireland are headed for AFL clubs there has been no shortage of articles.
Most of the players have been added to the International Rookie List for the respective clubs, meaning they are outside of the main squad lists, but can play for the clubs' feeder teams, such as in the VFL, and be called up to senior duty if a long term injury occurs.
In a disappointing development for US and international fans, the match between Geelong and Richmond planned for Los Angeles next January has been cancelled due to lack of funding. Reportedly the exercise fell $100,000 short of the $1 million required to stage the match, compounded by logistical problems with preparing the venue at UCLA.
AFL game development manager David Matthews reported yesterday that the AFL were trying to find clubs to remount the London exhibition match for 2008, in addition to the planned matches for Dubai and South Africa.
Through the start of this century Australian Football supporters keen to see the game developed more beyond Australia's borders were quite accustomed to hearing the mantra that the Aussie states of Queensland and New South Wales were the Australian Football League's number one development priority. With an obviously greater commitment to international footy in recent years the mantra is less often repeated, but the AFL's determination to see the game achieve full penetration into two of Australia's biggest states has not lessened. The obvious next step in the sport's evolution is the move to place an AFL club on the Gold Coast, and one way or another, 2010 appears to be the target.
While Ben Cousins has been in the news for all of the wrong reasons lately (even to the point of being charged by the AFL for bringing the game into disrepute and suggestions of recreational drug use), it wasn't just Ben's mysterious disappearance in the USA that had many in the Australian media surprised. Many newspapers were instead fascinated by the fact that the AFL star, got attention, if not in the mainstream, but among the more influential players in the blogosphere.
Naturally, one of the biggest stories to reach US blogs in recent times was Saverio Rocca's successful conversion from Aussie Rules to NFL football, which was reported by popular blogs Deadspin, Larry Brown Sports, The 700 Level, highlighting more than anything just how massively popular the NFL is stateside.
While tabloid news is not necessarily promotion of the finer points of our game, it does demonstrate a growing awareness of the Australian Football League among Americans, who are just beginning to spread the word and discover that our game is indeed different to rugby.
A concept that has been mentioned a few times in planning for next year's International Cup is a combined Israel-Palestine team, supported by the Peres Centre for Peace. The Australian Jewish News yesterday reported that plans for the team were well underway, with a dinner between key AFL and Jewish figures in Melbourne next month to gauge interest in the community to support the project, and corporate support via the Melbourne-based Pratt Foundation.
The team would be made up of players recruited and trained in Israel and Palestine over the next 10 months, then brought out as a squad for the cup.
The first-ever Dragon Cup between Aussie Rules UK's England and Wales representative sides was held last weekend in Cardiff, with the England Dragonslayers running out 5-goal winners over the Wales Red Dragons.
After the national anthems and a minute's silence for Welsh rugby legend Ray Gravell who died during the week, a hard-hitting match was underway with the Welshmen surprising the more experienced English team with their ferocity at the ball. Led by captain Jack Wells, the Welsh were well in the game until the Dragonslayers pulled away in the last quarter.
England's Mark Todd kicked five goals in a best-on-ground performance, with Daniel Morgan-Kane the best for the Red Dragons.
On October 16th, Ontario AFL Grand Final day, the touring Convicts side took on a slightly depleted Canada squad as a curtain-raiser and valuable match practice for the Northwind. After the Convicts concept had its first international loss earlier this year (when an injury riddled team went down to South Africa in Soweto), the Aussies bounced back with AFL legend Kevin Sheedy looking on. The following report is courtesy of the Convicts' Anthony Nanfra. Apologies for the delay as we were (unsuccessfully) attempting to gather Canada best player and goalkicker information.
The Denmark Vikings played a practise match yesterday against the DAFL All-Stars, with the All-Stars featuring the best Australians from the Danish league - and a special guest in Brownlow medallist Jimmy Bartel. Despite the highest-profile ring-in ever in Danish footy, the All-Stars went down to the Vikings quite convincingly - the Vikings winning 9.11.65 to 2.7.19.
The match was held after the DAFL's AGM, which saw Ian Hill become the new president, Jens Alsted Hansen vice-president, Ingmar "Terry" Lundquist secretary and Erik Krolmark treasurer. The biggest change will be the expansion of the Premier League to 7 sides, with the Vikings sets to compete as a stand-alone team in preparation for the International Cup.
After considering the question of fielding a second Premier League team for a number of years, Farum have compromised by allowing the national team (made up of around 50% Farum players) to join for the coming season. The Cats will continue to be repesented by Farum's Australian players and their next crop of young Danish players not in the main Vikings squad. It is hoped that for 2009 and beyond, the second Farum team will continue to participate in DAFL in its own right.
Full scores and stats for the Vikings vs Allstars match available at the Footy Record.
First of all don't get too excited - there isn't a new professional Aussie Rules international satellite network. worldfootynews.com is building a World Footy Channel on YouTube. There's a lot of good Australian Football footage available on YouTube courtesy of individuals, and we've joined in. It's a work in progress, so we're not sure yet how this will turn out, be it hosted through this site or directly on YouTube. Hopefully we can host our own material and also draw attention to some of the other excellent video out there.
We've had some major issues along the way, not least of which was finding the time, but finally we're uploading some of our footage from the 2005 Australian Football International Cup. Check it out on our World Footy Channel.
worldfootynews.com is pleased to release its new page listing most of the AFL players recruited from overseas to play in Australia (such as the many Irish recruits) as well as some of the notable overseas born players who have grown up in Australia and become stars of our great game. Although several months in the making, the list is by no means exhaustive, as Australia is very much a country of migrants, and hundreds of players in the AFL and indeed in the state leagues (VFL, SANFL, WAFL etc) were born outside of Australia.