This weekend’s CNFA Léo Lagrange round in France saw the Paris teams – the Cockerels and Cockatoos – hosting the Toulouse-based teams, the Hawks and Aviators. It was a highly successful weekend with both Paris teams winning, and in the process enhancing their finals prospects.
The Paris Cockerels handed the Toulouse Hawks their first defeat of the season. Both teams were locked on four wins apiece going into the match. The win for the Cockerels sees them outright competition leaders with two rounds remaining. In the other match, the Cockatoos leapt over the ALFA Lions and into fourth place after comfortably defeating the Aviators.
The Greater Western Sydney Giants won by 18 points over the Western Bulldogs in an enthralling AFLW match at the UNSW Canberra Oval. It was a tight contest by both teams in the first half and this was reflected on the scoreboard. As at quarter time the Dogs had a one-goal lead and the Giants had a 10-point lead at half time. The Giants took their game up a notch in the second half and made light work of the Dogs who tried hard to counteract and respond to their pressure. This win by the Giants is a statement win by the Giants to the rest of the AFLW competition.
Collingwood pulled of a huge upset over the Brisbane Lions by 14 points at the Moreton Bay Central Sports Complex. It was a good old game of wet weather fashion football between Collingwood and the Brisbane Lions. The Pies played exceptional football for the whole match and the Lions were stunned to say the least. However, in the final quarter the Lions had a late fight back, as they scored three of the last five goals of the match. The late goals could be important for Lions who have hopes of finishing top two on the AFL ladder.
It has been a tough off-season for the Australian Football League Central & Northern England (AFLCNE). The first blow was the departure of the Newcastle-based Tyne Tees Tigers as they moved to join the AFL Scotland league SARFL for a variety of logistical reasons – the most obvious being travelling advantages. Soon afterwards, it was announced that Sheffield Thunder would not field a team for the 2018 season due primarily to low player numbers.
The double-whammy losses will see the AFLCNE feature just five teams for the season. But whilst there are less teams, most of the players involved last year will be out there again for their respective clubs, so the standard of football is likely to be just as high as before – maybe higher.
In hot conditions the Adelaide Crows were able to hold on to win in the heat by 4 points at the TIO Stadium in Darwin over the Fremantle Dockers. The match was a tale of two halves, because the Crows dominated the first half with there tackling, scoring and overall play. Then the Dockers owned the second half of the match, as they dominated the possession and overall play. In the second half the Dockers were coming hard at the Crows and tried to end the Crows season, but the Crows leaders such as Erin Phillips, Chelsea Randall and Sarah Perkins stood up when needed for their team. As a result, the Crows have a chance of winning back-to-back AFLW premierships.
Canadian National Football Championships are coming to Toronto aptly on Canada Day in a further attempt to improve the representative performance of Canadian teams. At the recent AFL Canada AGM it was noted that two new positions were added to the AFL Canada board specifically targeting men and women’s national player representation.
Canadian men’s football international performances can be viewed as either competitive against it’s bigger southern neighbor or as not having leveraged the most out of it’s competitive Toronto league, acknowledged as.the best outside of Australia.
On this International Women’s Day we salute the women around the world making footy happen. Whether it is slogging it out on the training track, showing their skills in the heat of battle or doing all the jobs off the field that make the game happen (presidents, coaches, recruiting, media, development etc.), from a footy point of view they are putting the International in International Women’s Day. From Suva to Dublin, Paris to Zagreb, Port Malmo to Port Moresby, Cambodia to Calgary, Montreal to Islamabad, Auckland to Austin (and everywherer in between) women’s and girl’s footy is happening.
Increasingly women footballers are making the sacrifices to experience being a women’s footballer in Australia. In some cases it is to try themselves out against Aussies in Australian competition, in others it is to see if they can make it to the top against the best in the game’s homeland, and for others it is just to experience the game on it’s home turf at an Australian club. At the end of their journey they will take back a wealth of footy knowledge and experience to share ineir home land.
This year there are players such as Jess Blecher from Portland, Oregon (USAFL) who has just finished at Nightcliff in the NTFL and will play in Melbourne. Caroline Leduc has travelled from Montreal (AFL Quebec) to play with the East Fremantle Sharks and Alex Saulter (GB Swans and AFL England) is travelling to Australia to play with Melbourne University.
We asked Alex’s good friend and team mate Laura Turner to profile Alex Saulter ahead of her 2018 Australian footy odyssey.
The tremendous work of AFL India may be about to bring the sweetest fruit of all as the AFL considers options to take advantage of the tremendous football platform laid over recent years. The dedication of AFL India, and the uptake of the game across India, may be the “Perfect Storm” needed for the game to really take hold in a big way.
Nick Bowen from the www.afl.com.au website reports that the AFL are about to engage in further missions to explore the growth possibilities of the game in India, with matches at the highest level being slated again. This is on the back of recent stories from India which have looked at the growth of a local Mumbai-based competition (see Mumbai Footy Cup 2018), and a schools-based footy program in Mumbai (see School Kids Get Footy Lesson In India). Whilst these programs are outside of the AFL India umbrella, they also suggest that Mumbai is developing as the logical city to host an AFL match.
We’re one month into the AFL New Zealand premiership season, and the Central Giants have stayed atop the ladder with two convincing victories in as many weeks.
Round 3 Recap Round 3 saw the Giants take on the Northern Suns at QBE Stadium in Auckland. The Suns were feeling confident after a strong two weeks of competition, but the Giants kicked the first four goals of the match to gain a 30-point lead heading into halftime. Once again, the two Jameses -- Bowden and McKenzie -- were dangerous in the forward line for the Giants.
All was not lost for the Suns, however, as they put in a spirited effort throughout the match. Defender Alex Awatere received best on ground honors, and Jackson Clince managed to kick a pair of goals as well. However, the Giants ended up bringing home their third straight victory with a big second half.
The followng is an edited version of the AFL Canada 2018 president’s report by Lachlan Griffiths. As this an AGM report it is primarily looking back over the previous year’s events. I hope to interview Lachlan soon, looking forward about a new strategic plan which will be released shortly and some other details
History has been made in the Colombian capital city of Bogotá with the first match of the inaugural CAFL (Colombian Australian Football League) season being played last weekend.
The Bogotá Bullants go into the history books as the first team to win a match in the CAFL competition when they downed the DC Aguilas by 38 points. Domiant early, the “Bullants managed to clinch it in the end, warding off a fast-finishing Aguilas.”