The Men's top 4 were split off and played their semi-final (PNG defeating New Zealand, Ireland defeating South Africa).
The Men's 5th to 12th formed Division 1 and have now played their 4th match each, giving the ladder below. They now play off for final positions.
The Men's 13th to 18th formed Division 2 and have also played their 4th match each, but in their final round will play a pre-determined match each as per the amended schedule (as per worldfootynews.com suggestion) to ensure no repeated match-ups and a mix of opposition). Their final position will be determined by their aggregate ladder (the table below plus the final round of results).
The Women have completed Round 5 (an odd number of teams and byes resulting in 4 games each over those 5 rounds). They now play off for their final positions.
Canada certainly has produced a lot of depth in women’s football and the result is a style of play that is closer to men’s football than women’s
Canada started the day with their ruck supremecy pushing the ball into attack and that was the pattern for the whole day apart from some centre square infringements. The Lights use teamwork as an integral part of their play. It’s impossible to note all the instances of good play but only to mention a few highlights because in the first quarter the Storm were completely surprised by the Northern Lights use of the ball. #10 Aimee Legault was just starting to warm up on the wing giving options and a lot of drive.
The Storm were stunned as she marked and immediately played on , sometimes fending off, always looking to run and deliver to a lead or have a shot. This immediate play on style is what the coached had asked for. #8 Sylvie De Brabandere presented options marking uncontested in the square to kick a goal and thenkick another from a free kick. #33 Kendra Heil trapped a kick-in and added to the score. #11 Kirsten Bodashefsky took a good mark 35m out, ran around her opponent and slotted the ball through for another major, typical of the style of play that the Northern Lights were aiming for. It was total domination by the Northern Lights, only slowed down when the ball was trapped in scrimmages.
An overcast Melbourne day set the scene for Finland vs India, one of the matches to close Round 4 of the International Cup. Both sides were aiming to make amends for three successive defeats; Finland suffering losses to USA, Sweden and China. India going down to Tonga, PNG and Pakistan.
Another cold Melbourne day, with a cold southerly blowing to the Park St end of the Ransford Oval. Not cold by Canadian standards, or even compared to a Toulouse or Paris winter, but perhaps a shock to the Bordeaux Bombers and Toulouse Hawks members of the French team, coming from summer.
The French outran the bigger Canadians in the opening minutes, with scores level at one goal each.
Significantly, both teams kicked, marked and handballed with greater consistency than they had done earlier in the tournament. Team cohesion, confidence and basic skills had grown over a short period. The French running game at first challenged the Canadians, but not for long.
China and Japan are both Confucian societies with respect for tradition, even though this fact is often deliberately forgotten by leaders with other imperatives or can’t be seen for the material goods of today.
But we now have a new tradition of Australian Football. It’s getting stronger, particularly in Tokyo, Osaka and Komazawa in Japan and in Guangzhou and Beijing in China. Perhaps a 21st century Confucius might declare that footy is the main thing.
Tonga come into this game with two wins and the just the one win for Pakistan over India.
Every team goes into a game believing that they can win and the Shaheens had the strategies to counter the physical presence and skill of the Thunder.
The Thunder were into immediate attack and #17 Haseeb Qureshi was already defending stoutly for the Shaheens.
The Tongans were kicking long and high allowing #15 Alex Fakatoumafi to mark strongly and goal. When the Shaheens could manage to get the ball into the open they good football and one such passage they pushed the ball to #24 Jaffar Mehdi who goaled from the angle.
The Thunder re-applied pressure allowing #14 Peni Mahina to snap a goal bouncing past a defender. He and #17 providing a focus up forward bullocking hard and #22 pickalafi Tuione Nai snaps truly from a pack.
This was always going to be an interesting game to see how the game would pan out given the ladder positions Nauru (7th) and Great Britain (10th), and the fact that Nauru defeated Great Britain in Round 2.
With the Bulldogs having the taller ruck and key positional players and the Chiefs executing the possession game.
It was going to be a clash of styles. Surprisingly no one style prevailed. Each would move the ball up the ground in their own method starting from the halfback lines.Perhaps the Nauru Chiefs did not make the most of their opportunities and the G.B. Bulldogs held a slender one point lead at quarter time.