A big weekend of footy in Arizona on February 25th and 26th with six teams, Chandler Outlaws, ASU Sun Devils, LA/Orange County combine, Inland Empire, Nashville and San Diego taking part in the 9 a side tournament. Seven games were played on day one at the Tempe Sports Complex, with the top four teams advancing to the semi finals and final being played on Sunday. The Chandler Outlaws team taking out the 2006 tournament.
Perpignan will this weekend host a promotional 12-a-side Aussie Rules match between a side drawn from clubs across France and a squad from England, composed mainly of Reading Roos players. The match is expected to capitalise on a strong media push, with television, radio and print media promotion over the last few weeks and more than 300 tickets sold as of a few days ago.
Former Dublin Gaelic footballer and Melbourne Demons Australian football legend and Brownlow medallist, Jim Stynes, has spoken out about plans by the GAA and the AFL to put an end to the drafting of Irish teens by AFL clubs.
The Australian indigenous youth footy tour of South Africa has come to an end with the Aboriginal lads winning all three matches comfortably. But the tour was a great experience for the South Africans and if the tour becomes a regular event as hoped then the benefits will be all the greater. We review each of the three games, played in Potchefstroom, Mafikeng and Stellenbosch, with thanks to AFL South Africa Development Officer Jack Arnold for the information. Apologies for lack of information about the Australian details - understandably the busy AFL South Africa staff were focussed on their team. Photos to follow later.
Danish Footy took a bit of a hit when Denmark surprisingly pulled out of the 2005 IC, but the latest developments indicate that DAFL is getting its act together - with a rejuvenated leadership corps, a juniors tour to Australia in April and more internationals including Denmark and Sweden in the works.
Irishman Colm Begley has made the fastest AFL debut ever after lining up for the Brisbane Lions in their NAB Cup quarter-final in just his third game of Australian football. This comes hot on the heels of impressive form last week from Setanta O'hAilpin.
Over the last 15 years, a few clubs have existed in the area Londoners call 'up north' - the Liverpool Blues in the early 90s, then the St Helens (aka Northwestern) Miners and Doncaster Saints more recently. 2006 will be fourth time lucky for the region, with a crew training in Manchester. They may not be the only debutants in the BARFL this year - with an insider tip that there are groups close to startup in a few other British cities.
The Osaka Dingoes were founded a couple of years ago as the first Aussie Rules team in Japan's second largest city. To play matches, their squad spawned a second team, the Kansai Kangaroos (named after Osaka's province). This continued until late last year, when the Dingoes and Kangaroos went their separate ways - the Dingoes continuing as the Japan Osaka AFL with new squad the Kobe Blues, and the Kangaroos with their new league dubbed the AFL Kansai Japan, together with the expansion Kyoto Kockatwos.
The South African tour of talented young indigenous Australian footballers is underway, with the first match in Potchefstroom completed. The tour has three primary goals - as a developmental exercise for the Aboriginal youth players, encouragement for AFL South Africa, and as an investigation by the AFL to find out more about Aussie Rules' potential in SA.
worldfootynews.com is a not-for-profit group helping to promote the internationalisation of Australian Football. Our efforts are based around reporting stories about leagues around the world, sourcing initial information from websites, forums and a large list of contacts from inside and outside of leagues and clubs. We are currently looking for a new writer to assist in covering the Oceania region, in particular one of Australian Football's fast growing success stories, Papua New Guinea.
New French side the St Esteve Saints played their first match last weekend, travelling to Valls, Spain, to take on the Belfry Valls of the Catalan footy community south of the Spanish border. The Saints are based in the vicinity of Perpignan, in the Catalan-French region of Rousillon - and the debutante French side impressed on debut, handing their southern counterparts a 112-28 drubbing.
Note: we have been advised that the team competing against St Esteve were the club from the city of Valls (2005 Catalan premiers), rather than the Catalan overall selection. Article has been updated to reflect this, apologies to the Catalan camp!!
Players and officials in Australian Football leagues around the world are sometimes surprised to find that many Aussies don't realise their top national football code is played overseas. This has surely been changing in recent years with a reasonable amount of coverage given to the 2005 International Cup, the South African experiment, and quite a few media stories on the two Japanese players doing a pre-season with AFL club Essendon. Such an aim was indeed been part of worldfootynews.com's raison d'être. On a smaller scale than some of the national media reports was a recent article in the Loxton News, in South Australia's Riverland. One of their local players had a run in the Golden Gate AFL in San Fransisco and was enthusiastic about the experience.