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Tuesday, February 20 2018 @ 03:48 pm ACDT

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Australia hold off Ireland to take 2nd IRS Test and reclaim trophy

International Rules
Australia has reclaimed the Cormac McAnallen Trophy in dramatic fashion, winning the 2017 International Rules Series in warm, partly cloudy conditions in Perth on Saturday. It was an exciting clash, with tempers flaring periodically and 30,000-plus spectators coming down to Subiaco Oval one last time to catch a contest.
 
Joel Selwood was reported for high contact, causing a melee shortly right before halftime; the Geelong star was sent off with a black card with Ireland holding to a 13-point lead. The Irish were able to use accurate kicks and quality defensive pressure early on to hold Nat Fyfe and Patrick Dangerfield. Once again, Michael Murphy and Conor McManus were the major stars for the visitors.
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Time for Women's International Rules to be resurrected

International Rules

This week saw the best men’s footballers from Ireland and Australia’s native football codes take part in the hybrid series of International Rules. The series saw two close matches that was well received by crowds at the game and on TV.  So if the best men of the game can represent their country in this format surely the women can take part too?

In fact they did back in 2006. Julia Boyle who played for Australia in the 2006 Women’s International Rules Series against Ireland told me, “it was the biggest highlight of my football career. I had played both Gaelic Football since I was 17 and VWFL since I was 19, I had represented Victoria in both Codes and had also won two World Cups for Australia in Gaelic Football. I had pretty much retired from AFL in 2002 after Parkside folded and was just playing /concentrating Gaelic Football. When word got around that the series was going to happen, I started playing AFL again."

"It was very hard juggling commitments to both codes, often having to play two matches on the one day. I remember the 5 months leading up to the selection trials in the July 2006 I lost nearly 25kg, and I was the fittest I had ever been. The quality of the players that were selected Australia wide were the best in the country at the time, so it was very competitive in selection”.

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Tiwi Bombers Sound Warning

Australia
Last season was one to forget for the Tiwi Bombers. A wooden spoon followed some ordinary performances across the season and led to a commitment from everyone at the club to access all areas and find improvement. Their win on the weekend made in three in seven rounds – already surpassing their total wins for last season. Positive signs are coming from the Tiwi Islands as the club rebuilds.

A home fixture for Waratah didn’t help greatly as the Tiwi Bombers got away to a handy early lead and still held a 20 point lead at the main break, courtesy of an after-the-siren goal to former Melbourne Demon Liam Jurrah, lining up again for the Bombers. A seven goal third quarter for the Bombers put the game safely out of the reach of Waratah, despite a 12 goal shoot-out in the last quarter, with Waratah kicking seven to reduce the gap. The Bombers would be heartened by the performance of first game player Jake Best who kicked seven goals in his Bomber debut.
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Doha Kangaroos Keep Dreams Alive

Middle East
Recently, World Footy News reported of the decision that would see the Doha Kangaroos in Qatar stand down from fielding a team in the AFL Middle East competition for the current 2017/18 season. Their intention was to rise out the current travel restrictions between some Middle East nations and return to the league when travel became less difficult. (See story: Doha Kangaroos On Hold)

To ensure the teams stay fit and remain together, both the Doha Kangaroos (AFL) and the Qatar GAA (Gaelic Football) teams have come together in a unifying tournament with a view to their respective league returns.

The Doha Kangaroos state that:
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Bombers’ Top End Journey

Australia

Essendon’s first to fourth year players have returned to the club for pre-season training, and the first order of business has been visiting communities across the “Top End” of the Northern Territory. Natalie MacGregor has reported on the club’s website that star Bomber, Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti, and the rest of the touring squad visited Maningrida, on the north coast of Arnhem Land approximately 500 kilometres east of Darwin.

Giving back to the community is important to Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti

Visiting the remote indigenous community of Maningrida, West Arnhem Land, as part of the Club’s ‘Right of Passage’ camp with first to fourth year players this week, McDonald-Tipungwuti said the group would benefit greatly from the experience.

 

“The players will take a lot away from the whole experience,” McDonald-Tipungwuti said.

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AFLX Is Coming In February 2018

General News

 The following media release from the AFL details the draw and rules for the new and exciting AFLX competition next year. Played as part of the pre-season build up to the season, AFLX follows in the steps of Rugby, cricket and even tennis with a revised, fast-paced format. The release states:

The AFL wrote to the 18 clubs today outlining the addition of AFLX, an alternative version of the traditional game, to run in the lead up to the 2018 JLT Community Series.

AFLX, a fast and exciting version of Australian Football, is to be played on a rectangular field and aims to showcase the unique and most thrilling aspects of the game to attract new fans. 

The public will get their first chance to see AFLX in February 2018 when Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney host individual tournaments featuring all 18 AFL Clubs. 

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Opinion: New Head of Women's Football Needs To Take The Blinkers Off

Australia

The AFL's release of the news that Nicole Livingstone has been appointed as the Head of Women's football came through early this morning via press release.

I am glad to see that a woman has been appointed to the position. I think that there are perhaps many women with a better understanding of women's football and may have been a better choice, but am prepared to see what Nicole can do.  She will bring a high personal profile and national recognition to the position.  I respect and have enjoyed what she has done in sport and in the media. 

The cynical side of me says that she may be a puppet of the AFL commission in place to head nod to their agenda overall rather than to represent the interests of women's footy. But that's not really my biggest concern.

In the statement, where she was directly quoted it appears that she sees the game only as Australian.

“The growth of women’s AFL has been extraordinary. Every Australian girl can now actively pursue footy as their passion, past time or career. Importantly girls can now follow their dreams and as they do, we will continue to break down any barriers that may exist. 

“I’m excited by the challenge of growing the sport from a community grass roots level right through to high performance along with ensuring the league is commercially sustainable.

“There are many passionate AFL people around the country, all wanting to see the AFLW find its place in the hearts and minds of Australians and I look forward to connecting with them,” she said. 

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Nicole Livingstone appointed the AFL’s Head of Women’s Football

Australia

AFL Media Release

The AFL is pleased to announce the appointment of Nicole Livingstone OAM as the new Head of Women’s Football.

A three-time Olympic swimmer, respected sports administrator and commentator, Ms Livingstone will join the AFL on December 4 charged with the responsibility of growing and managing the NAB AFL Women’s Competition and female football participation.

AFL Chief Executive, Gillon McLachlan today said the league was delighted to add someone of Ms Livingstone’s calibre to the senior management team.

“Nicole is a champion in every sense – as an athlete, an administrator and an advocate for women in sport,” Mr McLachlan said.

  

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The #1 Draft Pick Fallacy

Australia
In a little over a week, the AFL world will be lauding the latest number one draft pick. The Brisbane Lions hold the pick this year and are already considering how to use it. At the same time, they will be hoping it will bring the dawning of a new area rather than being a poisoned chalice. To some, the gaining of the number one draft pick is a chance to obtain greatness, but history shows that isn’t always the case.

AFL/VFL history is littered with failures – admittedly most from the era when drafting was a very inexact science. But names like Richard Lounder (Richmond, 1987), Anthony Banik (Richmond, 1988), Stephen Hooper (Geelong, 1990) and John Hutton (Brisbane, 1991) never reached the highest of expectations that came with the pick.

On the other hand, Nick Reiwoldt (St Kilda, 2000), Luke Hodge (Hawthorn, 2001), Brendon Goddard (St Kilda, 2002), Adam Cooney (Western Bulldogs, 2003), Brett Deledio (Richmond, 2004) and Marc Murphy (Carlton, 2005) have gone on to be revered names in the game.
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2017 International Rules - 2nd Test International Broadcast Schedule

International Rules

Coverage of the second of two IRS Tests between Australia and Ireland will kickoff at 4.45pm in Perth on Sunday local time.

The match will be broadcast on limited overseas networks. It will also be streamed live on the Watch.AFL service, available by subscription.

The full schedule is as follows.

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List changes for 2nd IRS Test in Perth

International Rules
There will be a few new faces for both Ireland and Australia in the second International Rules Series this Saturday.
 
On the Aussie side, there were injuries to Scott Pendlebury and Michael Hibberd. Pendlebury suffered a finger injury, but he tweeted after the game that X-rays were negative; Hibberd had a calf complaint and could be limited in Perth.
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AFL Jumpers raffle for Portland Australian Football Club

North America

Here's your chance to win the perfect gift for the Bombers or Cats fan in your life, or yourself, while supporting footy in Portland (Oregon)!

On December 16th, during our PAFC Holiday Party, we’ll be raffling off team-signed Essendon and Geelong jumpers, with the drawing streamed online on Facebook Live. Proceeds will support the Portland Australian Football Club as we head into the 2018 season.

Both jumpers are signed by their respective full 2017 senior teams, including all-Australians Patrick Dangerfield and Joel Selwood for Geelong, and Joe Daniher, Michael Hurley, and Zach Merrett for Essendon. Each jumper will be raffled off separately; tickets can be purchased online using the forms below through noon PST on December 16th. Then, at 6:30pm PST on the 16th, head to our Facebook page to watch as the winners are drawn.

To order your tickets head to the raffle page here. 

Winners located anywhere in the United States will be shipped their jumper via USPS 2-Day Priority Mail. Winners located in Australia will be charged $15 USD to cover international shipping.
 

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