An opportunity exists to assist the development of Australian Rules football in Japan with the newly formed Hiroshima Football Club seeking individual donations and corporate sponsors to raise the necessary start-up funds to get the club on the field.
Below is the link for those interested in assisting the Hiroshima club find the initial $1000 to be on the field, as well a a brief description of their aims. This opportunity may also be of value to clubs looking at developing links with Japanese clubs.
The following article appeared on the AustraliaPlus.com website earlier this week.
Australian football is played widely overseas with international participation estimated at more than 100,000 participants. There are clubs and links with the game all over the world. In Hong Kong, the local team the Hong Kong Dragons was established 24 years ago. It currently has a membership base of 50-60 players participating in the South China Australian Football League and the AFL junior AusKick program. AusKick, the AFL's development program is popular with both boy and girls both in Australia and abroad.
The half-time AusKicker game, where AusKick associations are invited to play on AFL grounds during senior matches is a traditional part of the spectacle and an unforgettable experience for all involved.
Footy returned to its birthplace in India on the 15th of June as Kolkata hosted the first ever ‘ARFAI Bengal State Championship’ in Salt Lake, West Bengal. Six teams with players hailing from Bongaon, Kharda, Hooghly, Howrah and Kolkata fought it out on the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan school ground on a Sunday which witnessed scorching heat, thunderstorm, torrential rain and some cracking Footy action.
The ground in fact hosted the first ever exhibition match of Footy in India back in 2008 with the efforts of present Secretary General of the Australian Rules Football Association of India, Sudip Chakraborty.
The teams were divided into 2 groups of 3 each and played out a round robin format to decide which 2 teams would go on to contest the final. The first group featured the Tigers, Giants and Bombers while the second group matched up the Eagles, Saints and Wolverines against each other. The Eagles team was lucky to play in official West Coast Eagles merchandize provided by the club themselves and facilitated by ARFAI ambassador Helen Mell from Perth.
The tournament also saw the first appearance of a non-Australian brother club in the form of Wolverines who take their name from Wolverhampton Wolverines club in AFL England. After fiercely fought matches in the group stages, the Bombers and the Saints advanced to get a shot at the coveted trophy.
The city of Hiroshima, located in western Japan on the main island of Honshu, will forever be etched in history as the first city to be bombed by a nuclear weapon. On August 6th, 1945 the USAAF B-29 bomber the Enola Gay dropped the device which caused such massive death and destruction.
But since that tragedy the city has become an international symbol of growth and rebuilding, winning the enduring respect of the world to return from such total destruction and become one of Japan’s most beautiful cities.
The oleander is the official flower of the city as a symbol of growth, as it was the first flower to bloom after the disaster. Maybe there could be the spirit of the oleander in the Hiroshima football club as it begins to grow and bloom in this Japanese city of over a million people.
Australian football is back in the beautiful city of Hiroshima. Several years after the inaugural friendly between an Osaka team and an eclectic assortment of eager participants from Hiroshima City, Australian Football has returned. As a city with a very vibrant international community and very strong links with Australia, it is hoped that the team will grow rapidly.
AFL Japan kicked off the 2014 season last on Sunday 20th April in a match where 2013 Top League Premiers, Tokyo Bay Suns defeated the Eastern Hawks by a whopping 110 points. Final score: 21.26 (152) to 5.1 (42).
Anzac weekend saw two matches, Senshu Powers taking on R246 Lions on Saturday 26th while the Tokyo Goannas battled it out with Komazawa Magpies on Sunday.
AFL Japan has undergone some structural changes during the off season, splitting the Top League into two regional leagues. The West League comprises the Osaka Dingoes and the Nagoya Redbacks, whilst the East League is made up of Tokyo Bay Suns, Komazawa Magpies, Senshu Powers, Eastern Hawks, Tokyo Goannas, R246 Lions and for the third year in a row accepted a brand new team, the Poseidons.
Nine teams/clubs is the greatest number of clubs in AFL Japan history and augers well for the growth and development of footy in Japan.
The Tokyo Goannas held their season 2014 Launch on Sunday 6th April with an open training session (including Auskick drills for the kids) at Futkotamagawa riverside to kick the day off then back to the clubhouse at the Hobgoblin at Roppongi for a sausage sizzle and a Goannas Pint and Parma Special washed down with a beer.
Goannas merchandise was on sale and committee members collected player and social membership subscriptions during the day.
The Jakarta Bintangs recently featured on Channel 9's Adelaide news, with a focus on the role played by former South Australian policeman Adam Bray. Possible International Cup opponents of Indonesia would view this with interest. The locals look to be of slight build but fast and hard at the contest, and a few players displayed good skills (allowing for very slippery conditions).
Tom Calder, Australian Trade Commissioner in India and also ARFAI President speaking at the UN Next Step Conference on sport for development, organised recently in Delhi by Magic Bus (famous international sports NGO).
Melbourne Football Club is excited to announce China Southern Airlines as a new Platinum Plus Partner in 2014.
The world’s fourth largest airline will become the Club’s second highest commercial partner.
China Southern will become Melbourne Football Club’s presenting membership partner and gain extensive exposure through the Club’s media backdrop, scroll and parapet signage at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), digital advertising through the website and extensive match day activations.