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Sunday, February 26 2017 @ 07:01 AM ACDT

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Kendra Heil ruptures ACL

North America

Collingwood’s Kendra Heil will miss the inaugural AFLW season with scans confirming a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee.

Heil was injured innocuously during a training session last Tuesday. It is her third ACL injury, having undergone a reconstruction to her left knee in early 2016 and another to her right knee in 2008.

Ontario-born Heil relocated to Australia in 2013 to pursue Australian rules football after being a standout performer with the Hamilton Wildcats in the Australian Football League of Ontario.

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Made In Canada

North America
Andrew McGrath has been named the number one draft pick at tonight’s NAB AFL Draft, and in one of a number of quirks for the night, McGrath was born in Canada. He still holds Canadian citizenship and even speaks with a slight Canadian accent when conversing with Canadian friends and family.

The Bombers’ newest addition, and first ever number one draft selection, was born in Mississauga, near Toronto, and moved with his father’s new job to Australia when he was five. He took up footy in Melbourne largely because most other boys at school did also. The rest, as they say, is history.

Canada has proudly watched the career of Sydney Swans’ premiership ruckman, Mike Pyke, from a distance. But now they can claim a potential superstar, with McGrath effectively holding the honour now of the best young player in Australia, drafted as the first selection nationally.
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Essendon To Sign US College Quarterback

North America

Tom Morris from Fox Sports reports that Essendon will be looking closely at gambling on an untried American footballer as a Category B rookie, and could know very soon as they prepare for their selections at this week’s national draft. It would be one of the first times Essendon has travelled down the American road for potential recruits, hoping they can find another Jason Holmes.

ESSENDON is poised to take a punt on little known American football player Travis Wilson.

 

Wilson, who was a quarterback with scrambling ability for the University of Utah Utes in the US college system for four years, has attracted interest from the Bombers despite having never travelled to Australia, let alone Melbourne.

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Canadian development teams head to Europe in '17

North America

AFL Canada yesterday announced they will be sending their men's and women's development teams to Europe in 2017. The women's development team the Midnight Suns competed in the 2014 International Cup alongside their official team the Northern Lights.

But 2017 will see them compete against the Irish Banshees and the Great Britain Swans who will both be warming up for IC17. A fourth team made up of the best players from the four AFL London women's clubs will also compete.

The men's development team has previously only played matches against the USA as part of the 49th Parallel Cup in the past.  But they will play for the first time outside North America against the Irish Warriors, the Great Britain Bulldogs and a fourth team yet to be named.

Games are set to be played on the 19th-21st of May 2017; with games being played on the Friday night, Saturday and Sunday.

It is a welcome push for more international footy matches outside the International Cup tournament.  The USAFL have indicated they will send a team to Europe in 2018 and Great Britain have indicated they may play in Canada in 2018.

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Saints sign up Holmes for another season

North America

Jason Holmes’ AFL dream is set to continue with the Illinois-born big man offered a one-year contract with the club.  

Holmes was recruited as St Kilda’s international selection with pick No. 36 at the 2014 Rookie Draft and was the first born and raised American to make an AFL debut in Round 21, 2015.  He is also the first American to play in two AFL seasons.

Elevated in Round 9 this year, Holmes has earnt a permanent spot on the senior list after stepping up for the last two games of the 2016 season in Tom Hickey’s absence.

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Girls Play Footy Podcast USAFL Nationals

North America

Peter Holden travelled to the 2016 USAFL Nationals and commentated women's matches throughout the tournament which were streamed live (and can be viewed on the USAFL's Youtube page).

He also put together this week's Girls Play Footy Podcast featuring interviews over the weekend.

You can find out all the latest on women's footy at their site - www.girlsplayfooty.com

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Revolution narrow IC17 squad and look to Europe

North America

The USA national side the Revolution have one of the most thorough selection processes of any nation ahead of the International cup. Over the past two years they have been assessing and trialling players from all over the USA. On Sunday the USAFL announced a narrowed squad of 66 players that will represent the USA.

This time around they have announced they will select 30 players from this squad in April next year to bring to the 2017 AFL International Cup in Melbourne. Those named on Sunday that do not make the trip to Melbourne, will be then representing the USA in 2018 on a playing trip to Europe (details yet to be announced).  It has been a very long time since the US national team has travelled to Europe (2001) after years of talk about it happening again it looks like it will get off the ground. 

The Revolution team will also take a team to Canada again in 2018.

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Austin Crows Champions again

North America

The Austin Crows are the USAFL National Champions for 2016 having beaten the Golden Gate Roos in the final of the USAFL National Championships.  The Crows were out of the blocks early and had a strong lead at half time and looked to be certainties.

Golden Gate continued to push them but in the end were no match for the Austin team.

In Divison 2 the Calgary Kangaroos defeated the Columbus Jackaroos by 36 points and in Division 3 the Portland Steelheads were winners over the North Carolina Tigers by 24 points.

Divison 4 title was taken out by the Ohio Valley River Rats combine.

In the women's Division 1 the San Francisco Iron Maidens ended the Denver Lady Bulldogs run of titles and in Division 2 the Portland Sockeyes defeated the Montreal/Boston combine.
 

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Reigning champs look strong on US Nationals Day 1

North America

In humid and variable conditions (bright sun to wind and rain) teams from across the US and Canada battled it out in four men’s and two women’s divisions.

Reigning champions the Austin Crows kept their favourites tag as they accounted for the Quebec Saints and Denver Bulldogs in Division A with little fuss and with a win tomorrow morning over LA will be firm favourites for the title again.

DAY 2 STREAMING LIVE - CLICK THIS LINK

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Making Team Canada Northwind

North America

Greg Bridges plays for the Ottowa Swans and has made the Canadian Northwind Team to play in the 2017 International Cup.  And now he has made a video about it.  Check it out below or on Youtube.

We look forward to following Greg's journey in this video blog series as he prepares for the tournament in Melbourne in August next year. 

See you in Melbourne Greg.

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