In the following article by Peter Ryan on the www.afl.com.au website, the visit of a trade delegation from the Netherlands has been undertaken to explore the role of the game within sectors of Australian society. Whilst their aims seem to have a broader scope than simply sport, or indeed Australian Rules football in the Netherlands, it is interesting that our game is considered a potential blueprint for other nations to follow.
A HIGH-LEVEL trade delegation from the Netherlands visited AFL House on Friday, keen to understand Australian football's place in the community.
The delegation included the Dutch Minister for Economic Affairs, Mr Henk Kamp, the Deputy Director of European and International Affairs, Ms Yvette van Eechoud, and officials from various Dutch sports including the Royal Dutch Football Federation.
Travis King from www.afl.com.au reports that Essendon’s young Irish recruit, Conor McKenna, has signed a new deal which will see him on the Essendon senior list for 2017. The signing provides a great platform for McKenna to launch a long-term career with the Bombers.
NORTHERN Irish speedster Conor McKenna will remain at Essendon next season after inking a fresh one-year deal.
After playing 12 games this season, the former Category B rookie has also been rewarded with elevation to the senior list in 2017.
In this article from Travis King on the www.afl.com.au website, Hawthorn’s post season list changes have included the addition of another young Irishman to accompany their other Irish player Conor Glass.
HAWTHORN has signed its second Irish rookie in 12 months, luring emerging Gaelic football and rugby star Conor Nash to Waverley.
As reported by AFL.com.au in August last year, the Hawks have been circling Nash for some time and the talented Irishman has finally joined the club.
The youngster, who hails from Navin about 45 minutes north-west of Dublin, will link up with the Hawks when pre-season training begins next month.
After two completed rounds of the CNFA 2016/17 season, the Cergy-Pontoise Coyotes have cleared out to a handsome lead. They sit on top of the ladder with two wins from two starts and a very healthy percentage after a huge win against the Perpignan Tigers.
The Tigers came to Paris determined to take the game up to the Coyotes, but the home team was switched on from the beginning. By half time they led by a whopping 96 points, having shut the game down early. From there, the run to the final siren went much the same way. The clinical skills in a last quarter that yielded 60 points to nil underlined the strength of the Coyotes.
A new footy force is starting to growl softly in the south of Sweden. The Eksjö Bulldogs have arrived and they intend to take the Swedish footy world by storm, just as their AFL namesakes, the Western Bulldogs, did this year. “We come out snarling, Bulldogs through and through.”
The town of Eksjö is located a little over 300 kilometres to the south-west of Stockholm, close to the southern city of Jönköping and a part of the Jönköping County. The town is also close enough to the Skane County clubs such as the Helsingborg Saints and Port Malmo Maulers to entertain fairly regular matches.
Gustav Svensson is the force behind the ‘Dogs, but already has plenty of friends prepared to work hard to develop this team and bring it to full fruition.
Football evolves. It is the nature of sports as they tap new markets, respond to opportunities, move to develop stronger fan bases and keep ahead of potential challenges.
Such is the story of France’s newest Australian football team, the Lille Eagles. The city of Lille sits close to the border with Belgium in the far north of France, a little over 200 kilometres north of Paris. With a population of over 200,000 (and an greater urban population of over one million), the city is a prime location to develop the game, particularly with its proximity to the city of Amiens and the nearby memorials of The Somme Battlefields where Australian and French teams play their annual ANZAC Day memorial clash - an area that has already embraced Australian football.
In a friendly rematch, played after a last minute venue change in Dublin at Islandbridge, the Irish Warriors have defeated the Great Britain Bulldogs to gain some satisfaction after going down them in the European Championships in August. The match is another important step for both national teams as they prepare for next year’s International Cup (IC17) in Melbourne.
The Warriors were determined to make amends for their last encounter and got away to a strong start, holding an almost unassailable lead by three quarter time. They had to withstand a five goal deficit fightback from the Bulldogs, but still managed to hold on for a valuable seven point win.
Final Scores: Irish Warriors 12 6 78 d GB Bulldogs 10 11 71
The ALFA Lions have added an extra ingredient of interest in the opening CNFA match in Lyon yesterday. In a season that has already shown a welcome evenness, the Lions big win over the Toulouse Hawks has added further intrigue.
Distance, time, travelling arrangements and a host of other factors can impact on a team’s performance and sometimes a hosting team can get a seriously large home ground advantage. But recognition of that alone does not do justice to the performances of host teams. The Lions’ score of 26 19 175 to the Hawks 5 10 40 says that even if the Hawks were down on the day, there is some very serious talent and fire power growing in Lyon.
Irishman Mark O'Connor has chosen to sign with Geelong Football Club in the AFL after trialling at the NAB AFL Draft Combine in Melbourne earlier this month. He will be signed to the club as an International Rookie and officially listed in the upcoming National Draft.
Irish media have widely reported his move to "Sleepy Hollow" after he confirmed it on Irish Radio na Gaeltachta’s An Saol ó Dheas this morning.
“It’s a very quiet place, like Dingle, and I was very comfortable there. I was really taken with Geelong.
“When I went in there everyone was very friendly, and I felt at home there,” the 19-year-old midfielder added."
It has been no secret since the season finished that Pearce Hanley would likely leave the Brisbane Lions and early on the Gold Coast Suns were the likely new home for the Irishman.
After 129 games for the Brisbane Lions he has become the best Irish player in the competition famous for his hard running off the hard back line. But this season something appeared wrong. And as the Lions continued to struggle at the bottom of the ladder Hanley appeared disinterested.
It is not known publicly for sure where the problem lay, be it with coach Leppitsch (who has now departed the club) or with particular team-mates. At any rate it is hoped a new start at the Gold Coast will see him return to the form of the previous few seasons.