A solid group effort and a big second half lifted Australia to a 10-point victory over Ireland on Sunday afternoon at the Adelaide Oval.
There were a lot of variables in play coming into the first 2017 International Rules test match -- the Aussie team hadn’t practiced formally up until the week of the match, the weather conditions weren’t in anyone’s favor, and the Irish team dealt with several players falling ill earlier in the week. A couple of late withdrawals for Australia -- primarily Toby Greene and Gary Ablett -- left a few question marks in the lineup.
In hot and mostly overcast conditons at Adelaide Oval the Australians scored 2 goals, 13 overs and 12 points (63 ) to Ireland's 1 goal, 13 overs and 8 points (53) to take a 10 point lead into next week's second test at Subiaco Oval.
The Irish lead at quarter time but the Australians worked back to a one point lead at half time. The Australians then dominated the second half of the match despite the constant scoring efforts from the likes of Murphy and McManus for Ireland.
Scott Pendlebury looks to have suffered a possible broken hand and may miss for the Australians in Perth.
A full match report from Frederick Shaibani to follow.
There was something quite congruent and in-synch about having two teams of young girls play as a curtain-raiser to an AFL Masters carnival. So many ways the two could be linked – old and new, past and present, a vision of the future through the eyes of those who have already been there.
But, however you look at it, two groups of players separated by generations took to the field yesterday in Cardwell, North Queensland, and all were proud warriors. The fact that these matches were played on Remembrance Day just added to importance of the event – and every player stepped up accordingly for the occasion. Young local kids from Mission Beach and Innisfail stopped their Auskick Clinic for the minute’s silence, then launched back into their scratch match with giggles and cheers of delight.
The Baltimore Washington Eagles have announced they will amicably split the club into two new entities. Following a very successful year on and off the field in the club located in two cities, it has been agreed that each location will now have their own team. The new Washington based entity the DC Eagles will retain the club mascot and colours (and support of the AFL's West Coast Eagles) and continue to play in the nations capital.
The Baltimore Dockers Australian Rules Football Club announced themselves on Facebook this week with a post stating "We are excited to announce the Baltimore Dockers Australian Rules Football Club! After growing the sport in the DMV area and playing as the Baltimore Washington Eagles Australian Rules Football Club for 20 years, we been able to establish independent football clubs in DC and in Baltimore. We're looking forward to your support and seeing what the 2018 season has in store!"
They hope to garner the support of AFL club Fremantle and emulate the Eagles/Dockers rivalry that thrives in the city of Perth, Australia.
A full statement on the split can be read here - https://eaglesfooty.com/2017/11/09/baltimore-washington-vote-to-expand-to-two-clubs/
Australian Rules football in the Middle East is unique – and at times problematic. Unlike most leagues that play their games with teams from within a country, AFL Middle East (Like AFL Asia) is a competition played amongst nations. The traditional nations in the league – United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Oman and Bahrain – have held the league together through many formats over the years depending of the availability of teams for that season.
But the political, economic, social and geographical challenges involved across this part of the world have conspired to halt the progress of some clubs – the latest being the Doha Kangaroos from Qatar. Just three seasons ago, the Kangaroos claimed their maiden AFL Middle East premiership. Now, after a period of travel instability across the region, mainly political in nature, the Kangaroos will sit out the remainder of the 2017/18 season.
Almost fittingly, the Essendon NGA team has taken out this year’s Under 14 Michael Long Cup in Darwin. The annual tournament showcases the next generation of young talent from across the Northern Territory and pits local junior Darwin teams against teams from Alice Springs as well as throughout Arnhem Land and the Tiwi Islands.
After the round robin matches to decide finals, the tournament was won by Essendon NGA over Collingwood NGA. Geelong NGA finished third ahead of the Cenral Redtails. Final scores:
Essendon NGA (Tiwi & East Arnhem) 5 4 34 d Collingwood NGA 3 4 22 ( first v second)
Geelong NGA (Gove Island) 8 7 55 d Central Redtails (Alice Springs) 8 3 51 (third v fourth)
St Mary’s 4 4 28 drew with Palmerston 4 4 28 (equal fifth place)
The event is named in honour of Essendon great, Michael Long. The AFLNT details the event as follows:
The Waratah Warriors have produced the upset of the NTFL Round 5 fixture, knocking out the Nightcliff Tigers by 27 points. The result, along with wins to Saints and the Tiwi Bombers, have seen three of the bottom half teams defeat three of the top half teams in a round that has completely changed the race. The Southern Districts Crocs sit undefeated atop the ladder and two games clear of the pack, whilst the Palmerston Magpies now inhabit bottom place – a game behind the field.
In between, just a game and percentage separates second place from seventh as this NTFL season shows how much more even the competition is for 2017/18.
The round opened with a thriller between St Mary’s and Wanderers in a grand final replay. In a tight game it was Wanderers leading at half time and at the final change. But the indefatigable Saints team would not be denied and stunned Wanderers with a four goals to one final quarter to get over the line by just three points. A last gasp shot at goal by Wanderers missed, handing Saints the valuable four points and consecutive wins after a slow start to the season.
Whilst the AFL Middle East football community had eyes firmly locked on the grand final replay between the Dragons and Bulls, it was another Emirates team that sent a strong message of their own. The Abu Dhabi Falcons fought hard against the Dragons in Round One and followed that up with a comprehensive win against the Dingoes to drive home the message that the Falcons are right there in the finals mix.
In a game of two halves, the Falcons did the damage with a 74 to 21 first half. The second half belonged to the Dingoes as they clawed back some of the deficit to outscore the Falcons after half time. Their effort was even more commendable with just two players on the bench. But the damage had already been done early as the Falcons ran out convincing 43 point victors. So early in the season yet, but the Falcons are on track to stay in the finals battle waiting for one of the top two teams to falter.
The Paris Cockatoos and Toulouse Hawks have enjoyed a big weekend with important victories over their opponents. The Cockerels travelled to Lyon to down the reigning premiers, the ALFA Lions, whilst the Toulouse Hawks were too good for the Bordeaux Bombers at home.
The ALFA Lions have learned quickly what it means to go from the hunter to the hunted. After winning last season’s flag and displaying good form in the pre-season, the Lions have lost both of their opening premiership matches. Losses to both the Cockatoos and the revitalised Toulouse Hawks I the opening round have made the season much harder for the Lions – from here it has to be as close to five wins from five starts as possible to challenge again for back to back honours. A tough task.
Darebin Falcons and Melbourne Uni are the only original clubs to remain in the Victoria's state league competition for women, with final 2018 teams named today.
The other clubs through a variety of factors have either chosen, or been forced to hand over their licences to VFL/AFL clubs or hand in their licence. One of these factors has been the massive increase of the licence fee by a factor of around ten times which clubs believed they would not be able to finance in their current state.
Other factors such as the imposition of a minimum standard of facilities the club must provide should bring great benefits to the development of players, but have also made it impossible for clubs to meet as stand alone community clubs with limited financial resources.
International players in the league such as Irish pair Laura Corrigan-Duryea and Clara Fitzpatrick, and Canadians Kendra Heil and Valerie Moureau will all need to find new clubs if they are to continue at state league level.
AFL Victoria has confirmed the position of the remaining 2017 Swisse Wellness VFL Women’s clubs for the expanded 2018 competition.
In changes from the 2017 structure, Diamond Creek, Eastern Devils and St Kilda Sharks have informed AFL Victoria they will not be continuing in the VFL Women’s competition, while premiers Darebin and Melbourne Uni have committed to the league for next season.
The Australian squad has had some modifications heading into the final week of training before the first international rules test match at the Adelaide Oval on November 12th.
GWS gun Toby Greene broke a toe in an unusual incident while on holiday in the States, and Australian coach Chris Scott decided to pick a handful of new players to take on Ireland. There’s a lot of backline speed to choose from among this group, including North Melbourne veteran Robbie Tarrant and the Melbourne Demons’ Neville Jetta.