The 2006 Ontario Australian Football League season moves into the home stretch this weekend with Round 10 following the break for the civic holiday long weekend. Only 4 rounds are left to play before the playoffs, so every game is important to the seven teams still mathematically in the race for the top five positions.
Thanks to AFL Canada's Bill Frampton for contrbuting this detailed summary of the Ontario AFL heading into Round 10.
AFL PNG is the leading organisation for Australian Football junior development outside of Australia, in terms of both pathways and sheer numbers. It is encouraging to see that girls footy hasn't been forgotten amongst the push to AFL success.
At the 2005 International Cup the South African vice-captain, Benji Motuba, was an inspiration as he returned to the field from a recently broken collarbone. The injury was sustained whilst playing in the South Australian Riverland on a scholarship. After the Cup he returned to Africa where he met his baby son for the first time.
It is believed that Irish wonderkid Martin Clarke has signed with the Collingwood Football Club. Clarke has been in Australia for the last four weeks to assess the possible move and the club, and for the Magpies to assess the young Gaelic star.
The Japanese national Aussie Rules side, the Samurais, are touring Australia from the 4th to the 14th of August. The team will compete against amateur Australia sides Howlong, Box Hill North, Box Hill Super Rules and their final match against Melbourne Vietnam.
Saverio Rocca is likely to follow in the footsteps of Bennett and Graham and head to the NFL to try his luck as a punter. Rocca has been seen over the past few months at a Preston location practicing his punting. The potential move has been confirmed in the past week, with Rocca having his punting filmed at the Telstra dome to send to US scouts. Rocca may have already been trialling with an NFL club by now except that he has been trying to notch up 100 games in the AFL with the North Melbourne Kangaroos to ensure that his sons are eligible to play for the Kangaroos under the father son rule in the future.
The biggest footy clash of the season in Western Canada took place this weekend at Thunderbird Stadium, home of the University of British Columbia's Canadian Football team, as the Vancouver Cougars hosted the Burnaby Eagles, Seattle Grizzlies and Calgary Kangaroos for the West Coast Challenge. The Challenge was a revamped version of the BC Footy Cup, with the cup still on the line. This came on the heels of a successful tournament in Kelowna, British Columbia that put Vancouver/Burnaby and the two Calgarys (Canadians and Australians) against each other. This would be the first time however, that the clubs would meet as a whole.
Twenty two boys and girls aged 6 to 12 participated in two USFooty Kids clinics held in Arlington, VA on July 8 2006 and July 22 2006. Chris Adams and Denis Ryan (USFooty Kids National Coordinator) conducted the clinics with the help of players and coaches of the Baltimore Washington Eagles. Judging by the big smiles on the faces of the players, coaches and parents everyone had a great time!
Queensland Country showed New Zealand no mercy as they vented their disappointment at missing the Division 2 final of the Australian Country Championships. Played over a full time match length in good conditions, the reigning International Cup champions were sadly no match for their strong opponents.
A documentary entitled "Flying Boomerangs" will air on the ABC's Indigenous Affairs program "Message Stick", covering the tour by young Aboriginal Australians to South Africa to play Aussie Rules against local teams. A preview of the program is available at the National Indigenous Times website. "Flying Boomerangs" will air on ABC TV on Friday August 4th (6pm) and Sunday August 6th (1.30pm).
The 2006 Scania Cup saw 12 sides from across Denmark, Sweden, Belgium, Britain and Ireland converge on the southern Swedish town of Landskrona last Saturday, July 22. Nine hours of solid tournament footy later, the Reading Roos defeated the South Dublin Swans by 8 points to take home the trophy for the third year in a row.