As clubs and nations prepare for this year’s ANZAC Day services and commemorations across the world, the Tyne Tees Tigers from Newcastle, England, are marking the event in their own special way. The club is also keen to gain the support and assistance of any interested in joining their special service. The following article comes from the Tyne Tees Tigers website.
ANZAC Day, 25 April, is one of Australia’s most important national occasions. It marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.
With the 2017 AFL Europe Champion’s League tournament looming in Amsterdam, the Manchester Mozzies have shared their views about the event and their preparations. Pool teams will be announced soon, but this article from the Mozzies’ website gives an insight into what happens in the lead-up to one of AFL Europe’s showpieces.
After nearly three months of training, the Mozzies are just two training sessions away from AFL Europe’s Champions League 2017. Though the groups for the initial stages of the tournament are yet to be announced the Mozzies are looking forward to the challenges that lay ahead in Amsterdam on April 1st.
Coach Chris Sproule has been including plenty of match simulation drills in training getting the squad ready for the intensity the AFL Champions League brings. “The boys are looking good, they’ve had plenty of running in their legs and their commitment to the contest is really impressive,” Coach Sproule said last week.
The ALFA Lions from Lyon in France have secured the minor premiership (short of a miraculous thrashing in their final round match) for the 2017/17 CNFA season. Their convincing win over the Cergy-Pontoise Coyotes last weekend saw them leapfrog the Coyotes on percentage and now have one game left against the Bordeaux Bombers to put icing on the cake.
In the match which many saw as the grand final preview, the Coyotes travelled to Lyon to meet in a match which would help decide top spot. Both teams were undefeated going into the match. In the end it was the hugely improved Lions that took the points, eventually running away to a convincing 51 point victory. The final score saw the ALFA Lions 104 defeat the Cergy-Pontoise Coyotes 53.
There are just four matches left to be played in the CNFA 2016/17 season, with battles taking place in Paris, Lyon, Toulouse and Bordeaux. In an amazing finish to the season, three teams could finish equal on points after the final round in the battle for fourth place, percentage only separating those teams. The Paris Cockerels, barring an unforeseen miracle, will finish in the top four. Each remaining game will either be a key to the pursuit of this season’s “Holy Grail” or a poisoned chalice, depending on results.
The biggest match on paper is next weekend’s blockbuster between the second placed ALFA Lions and first placed Cergy-Pontoise Coyotes. Both teams are undefeated this season – a remarkable effort. A win to the Coyotes will see them in a position to win the minor premiership. But if the Lions can win at home, they will take that honour as they already have a superior percentage to the Coyotes as well as a game in hand against the Bordeaux Bombers. It will be an amazing battle for premiership favouritism for two of the leagues most improved teams over recent seasons.
On March 4th the annual West Midlands Charity Shield tournament took place, hosted by Wolverhampton Wolverines. Men’s and women’s teams battled it out to claim the first silverware of the season, all to aid the ‘Balls to Cancer’ charity – designed to raise money to battle Testicular Cancer in men.
According to the AFLCNE website, “as well as last year’s champions the Wolverines, [the day] will see the University of Birmingham (men’s and women’s), Huddersfield Rams, West London Wildcats and last year’s AFLCNE grand finalists Nottingham Scorpions (men’s and women’s) eager to make an early mark and give us a taste of what to expect this season.”
The Bordeaux Bombers and Perpignan Tigers both fought gallantly in matches on the weekend as each were determined to keep their finals chances alive. The grim reality for both is that they are both in danger of missing the finals unless their fortunes change. Both Paris teams have made late charges for third and fourth spot, so wins for both the Bombers and Tigers were as close to essential as they can get.
The Perpignan Tigers played against this season’s biggest improvers, the ALFA Lions. Played in front of the Tigers’ home crowd, both teams fought like demons to the finish line. The Tigers needed a win to stay in finals contention, whilst the Lions still have eyes on a grand final. In the end the class of the Lions shone through and they won by 17 points. Final scores saw the Lions 92 defeat the Tigers 75.
Irish defender for the Melbourne Demons Laura Duryea was charged by the match review panel with engaging in rough conduct against Ellie Blackburn of the Western Bulldogs, during the fourth quarter of the match at the VU Whitten Oval on Saturday.
Fortunately Laura was able to accept a reprimand with an early guilty plea. After speaking to the umpire who made a report on match-day, and based on the available video evidence and a medical report from the Western Bulldogs Football Club, the incident was assessed as careless conduct with low impact to the head.
The incident was classified as a one-week sanction. As Laura had no applicable record which impacts the penalty (fortunately being sent off in the IC14 grand final does not count against her). Laura's early plea enabled her to accept a reprimand.
Back in December the initial French squad for this year’s IC17 in Melbourne was announced. But that list has now been trimmed and sorted and the official men’s team from France has been announced.
Coached by Andrew Unsworth (Paris Cockatoos/Cockerels), the squad boasts an even representation across all CNFA clubs. In the selected squad there are players from: Cergy-Pontoise Coyotes (4), ALFA Lions (4), Bordeaux Bombers (4), Paris Cockerels (2), Paris Cockatoos (4), Perpignan Tigers (2), Toulouse Hawks (4), Blagnac Aviators (2). The list of reserves also boasts two Lions, two Hawks, two Bombers and one Tiger player.
The good, old-fashioned local derby appeared in Toulouse on the weekend with a double-header featuring both Toulouse teams facing both Paris teams. In a sense it was a battle of the split teams with the Blagnac Aviators growing from the depth of the Toulouse Hawks and the Paris Cockatoos being brought to life in a similar way from the depth of the Paris Cockerels.
The match of the day finished up with a thriller as the Toulouse Hawks brought back happy memories from not too long ago when they downed the Paris Cockerels. Toulouse had no finals to play for, having long falling out of that race. But they can still have a say in which teams do play finals – and the Cockerels found that out the hard way.
Like all teams that mean to make a statement, the Tyne Tees Tigers in the AFLCNE (Australian Football League Central & Northern England) competition are about to embark on a rigorous pre-season campaign. Undeterred by their placings in their initial seasons, the Tigers have used everything to date as a learning experience and will fine tune in coming weeks as they travel backwards and forwards between Newcastle and Scotland.
After a promising end to the 2015 season, winning four of their last five games, the Tigers stalled a little in 2016, finishing in sixth place with just two wins. The season would have exposed a range of areas for improvement, and that is just about to happen.