Over the years there have been many studies and articles that dealt with why girls and young women give away their football. Often men write these articles and often the women that write them are not active in sport themselves. These are no less relevant or important but it is rare to find an account from the eyes of a young woman still involved in playing, yet questioning her own desire to continue.
A young woman playing soccer writes the following story. MarvaMSK’s (the name on her WordPress article) story is as relevant to Australian Football as it is her own code of choice. With the AFL postponing the AFL Premiership season on the same day they cancelled the remainder of the AFLW season, questions were raised as to the priorities of the AFL when it came to women’s football. Some believe that the AFL may have inadvertently devalued the women’s game through that decision-making process (suggestions that if the men’s season can be postponed, why couldn’t the women’s seasonω).
In many ways, girls and women face the challenge of questioning their place in the game, and this article goes a long way to understanding that questioning process.
There is no roaring yet, but certainly a very low growl coming from the south of France. It is the growl of the Perpignan Tigers, a team which has found it difficult in recent years to keep their team on the playing fields of the CNFA, but a team that has also never stopped trying.
France, as a nation, is facing the unenviable task of being one of the nations hardest hit by the impact of COVID-19. Along with their neighbours, Spain and Italy, France has seen unprecedented pandemic cases and tragic loss of life. In this environment, football rightly remains a low priority.
However, pending France’s ability to contain COVID-19 and the ability of the population to prevail and regroup, the 2020/21 CNFA season will likely go ahead as planned around October – still five months away. With that in mind, most clubs still have an eye on being prepared for what lies beyond the darkness of the coronavirus tragedy.
In a few short years, the Bogota Bulldogs have both added to the sporting mosaic of Colombia as well as providing an international Australian Football competition and rivalry in South America along with the Santiago Saints in Chile. Some may see the game in Colombia as an exotic outpost for the game, others just another sport. Then there are those (like me) who see football in Colombia as an important frontier in the natural expansion of our game.
In these COVID-19 times, where the world waits for footy to resume again across the world, we have two film clips briefly showcasing the game in Bogota. The 2018 Grand Final between the DC Aguilas and Bogota Bullants, as well as the Fossil Cup of 2019 between the Bogota Bulldogs representing South America against the Austin Crows from Texas representing North America. Both were historic occasions and recently released to the club's YouTube channel.
2018 CAFL (Colombia Australian Football League) Grand Final - DC Aguilas v Bogota Bullants
Callum Twomey reports on the www.afl.com.au website that Essendon’s Conor McKenna and a host of other Irish players who returned back to their home country during the AFL shutdown are returning ready for Round 2.
ESSENDON speedster Conor McKenna will arrive back in Melbourne on Saturday for what could be his last season in the AFL facing a complicated race to be ready for round two.
McKenna, like Essendon's other two Irishmen Cian McBride and Ross McQuillan, headed back to their homeland in March after the season was suspended due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
He is due back in Australia on Saturday evening but then has to enter a strict 14-day quarantine period like other overseas travellers returning to the country.
The following is the official AFL statement, released on the www.afl.com.au website regarding the season restart date and the conditions around the restart on and off the field. This positive move will also be the catalyst for footy returning at all levels – grassroots through to nation and eventually international.
The AFL has today announced that clubs will return to training on Monday, May 18 and the 2020 Toyota AFL Premiership season will resume on Thursday, June 11.
Players and football department officials will return to clubs on Monday, with clubs completing a 3.5 week training block before matches officially restart.
Clubs will initially train in maximum groups of eight, before resuming full contact training from Monday, May 25.
All players and returning football department staff will have been tested for Covid-19 prior to returning to the club and undergone education sessions on the protocols they will need to follow, including rigorous ongoing screening and regular testing, throughout both the training and return to play period. This will also apply for umpires and AFL Match day staff once the season resumes.
In spite of the hard times going on around them, the Houston Lonestars from Texas have put together their own video clip showing club members staying in touch with the footy and each other as they negotiate COVID-19. Not only does the clip feature some unexpected footage from The Cattery down at Geelong, keep your eyes open for a "Cat Cameo".
Well done Houston Lonestars and thank you on behalf of the entire footy community worldwide.
The following article by Callum Twomey at the www.afl.com.au website looks at recent comments made by Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley, which cast doubt on the future of international recruits and the recruiting process for talent from alternative catchments.
Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley says clubs may not have the resources to look abroad for players
DESPITE the Mason Cox success story, Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley has forecast international rookies to be a 'casualty' of the AFL's COVID-19 fallout.
Cox has been one of the shining category B rookie stories in recent times, with the American ruckman/forward proving to be a key member of the Magpies' side.
Collingwood has also two Irish players currently on its list – Mark Keane and Anton Tohill – having had a strong history in the region, including former star defender Marty Clarke.
When Port Adelaide Powers’ president David Koch loosely indicated last week that the AFL’s China experiment may be over, the theory became the catalyst for some lively debate in recent days.
When interviewed by The Adelaide Advertiser, Koch did not say that the experiment was over. However, he did express doubt over Port Adelaide’s role in future Chinese fixtures.
He told the newspaper, ““I’ve actually got no idea (how that will look)…We will discuss with the AFL, State and Federal governments and our partners who support us in China about the future of it.”
He went on to add, ““Our whole China strategy originally was not predicated on having a game. We’ll have to assess that coming out (of the pandemic) but at the moment, in terms of priorities, it’s not a massive priority for us to make a decision on.
The Leeside Lions, one of the AFL Ireland clubs in hiatus due to COVID-19, have shown the world a way out by adroitly combining social-distancing with football skills. The following clip from the Cork-based club showcases a range of talents and proves footy can still move forward despite current challenges to the game. Our thanks to the Leeside Lions for sharing.
Michael Gallus is known to many people in the footy world as the founder of the Footys4all Foundation in Australia, an organisation in Australia that distributes donated sporting equipment to kids in need the world over. He is also an ardent Carlton supporter.
Recently, he took on the challenge of putting out the rubbish by dressing his wheelie bin as Graeme "Jerker" Jenkin, the Collingwood ruckman used by Alex Jesaulenko to take the "Mark of the Year" in the 1970 VFL Grand Final. Here is his attempt to recreate a part of footy folklore.
Across Europe, clubs, leagues and governing bodies are gradually preparing for football after the COVID-19 threat has eased sufficiently to consider resuming training and matches. The situation is different for each nation, and subsequently for the leagues and clubs in those nations, and AFL Switzerland has already announced its plans for a return to the playing fields.
In a message to all players, officials and teams across Switzerland, the national league has released the blueprint for the remainder of the 2020 season.
Initially conceding the round of matches (originally Round 2) on 9th May in Zurich, most of the remainder of the original season is intact. With a rider that things could change should the nations recovery from the disease be slowed, the league proposes the following.
As the United States of America struggles with the devastation wrought by COVID-19, all facets of community are still looking ahead to life beyond the virus. The USAFL also has its eyes on a future after coronavirus and a new update from the USAFL Executive Board to club presidents addresses their vision and steps required to get there.
The following excerpts from the release paint a hopeful picture, whilst acknowledging that much has to yet happen in the nation with regard to control of the disease, including eradication, and that the situation is still evolving on a daily basis.
“We are still hoping that we will be able to play tournament footy within the coming months. Therefore, our current plan is for the USAFL to support and promote smaller local tournaments, once it is safe and permitted to do so, later in the summer and fall.”