In the early game of Round 2 the new side Spain took on one of the favourites in New Zealand. Alas the Bulls were not as competitive as they were against Japan, and it's starting to look like a long tournament for the Europeans.
After falling behind PNG early a big loss was on the cards for Team Canada in Round 2 of the International Cup at Murphy Reserve, Port Melbourne. But after a fearsome half-time blast from their coach, the Northwind blew back into contention, only to fall short.
In what may be described by some as the biggest upset in International football, the US has defeated Ireland in a game that saw the miserly backlines of both teams give new meaning to the word tight. The loss was Ireland's first in international Australian football, ending a run that stretches back to the 2001 Atlantic Alliance Cup.
The Buffaloes' dream of winning their first match was realised when the siren sounded leaving them two points ahead of the Japanese side who had battled manfully to the very end. Scenes of jubilation followed as the players sung and danced to celebrate their finest moment so far.
In Round two action from the Australian Football International Cup, Samoa beat Great Britain by a very handy margin, Papua New Guinea eventually triumphed over Canada in a very physical encounter which could have gone either way, the USA overcame Ireland in a tight match, South Africa defeated Japan in a two-point nailbiter and New Zealand easily accounted for Spain.
Full results and reports to come in the next two hours.
What a great first day of international Australian Rules football. Spectators who were at the inaugural Cup in 2002 remarked that the standard had improved dramatically across the board. Who are the big improvers? Were there any major surprises?
What can be expected in the next round?
All the final scores, best players and goalkickers after the first round of the 2005 International Cup. Note that latest scores will generally be first available at The Footy Record as linked on our front page.
In the late time slot of the first day of the 2005 Cup, at Aanenson Oval, one of the fancied chances Papua New Guinea found themselves in a titanic struggle against the pride of Samoa. It wasn't until the closing minutes that Australia's northern neighbour pulled away to a narrow win as the rain came down.
The US Revolution team keen to show their improvement from 2002 came out hard against the South African Buffaloes team. While winning convincingly they found a fast dedicated opposition also showing improvement and a more balanced side than in the past.