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Saturday, February 23 2019 @ 01:14 pm ACDT

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Sydney Swans Turn To Star Recruit - Conan O'Brien

North AmericaLast year both Meghan Markle and Natalie Portman surprised the Australian Rules football world with surprise visits to clubs or related events whilst in Australia. Now, American comedian Conan O'Brien is the latest celebrity to spend time learning our game - with the Sydney Swans.

The following YouTube clip shows O'Brien learning the game as part of a new show in production.

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Hawai’i Eagles Join USAFL

  Just last week the Hawai’i Eagles held a small inner club match. The grey team defeated the blue team on a cold, wet and windy – almost Melbourne like day – in what the club thinks may be the first ever Australian Rules game played in Hawai’i.  

However, the bigger picture is the club’s inclusion within the USAFL – to date the biggest vindication of their efforts and acknowledgement of their presence on the North American footy scene. To mark that event, Brian Barrish from the USAFL wrote the following article for the www.usafl.com website. 

 

Dallas McCulloch arrived in Honolulu with a bit of an itch to scratch.  

He had played Aussie Rules for the Austin Crows before heading to Australia, where he spent four months playing for the North Brunswick Bulls of the VAFA.  Well, sort of.

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Hawai’i Eagles Take Flight

North America
Last year, the Hawaiian sports scene was expanded to include a new Australian football club (see:Australian Rules Football Comes To Hawaii). Since then, men and women have been meeting at Kapiolani Park in Waikiki to have a kick, develop skills and enjoy the social side of a footy team.

But now the club has taken the step to officially brand itself. They have now called themselves the Hawai’I Eagles Australian Rules Football Club.

Whilst competition is still a while away, with options for competition being looked at, the club is still moving in the right direction. Club founder, Dallas McCulloch, announced on the club’s Facebook page that the club “are hosting our first inner club match which is also the first United States Australian Football League sanctioned event in Hawai'i. We welcome pros and newcomers who have never played footy too, so come have a kick!.”
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Canada AGM Report

North America
Not to long ago AFL Canada released a pictorial summary, displayed at the end of this article. Now we have presidents report from AFL Canada which provides some explanation.

In summary, senior player numbers were flat .

AFL Ontario contributed to the lower number of men's player with the withdrawl of Broadview in Toronto bringimg the men's division down to nine teams, but with new prospects in in the regional cities of Barrie, London and especially Kingston.

AFL Quebec increased in both genders, with the introduction of the Montreal City Blues and Blue Belles bringing the league's teams up to five and three, respectively.

Juniors league players are split between the long established North Delta Junior AFL and Calgary. The vast majority of those junior players are non-Australians.

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Natalie Portman's Platypus

North AmericaHollywood actor, Natalie Portman, has recently visited Australia and spent some time with the Melbourne Demons. On her return home, Natalie has taken our game to the world stage with a brief mention on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, taking the "platypus" of sports into homes across the United States and the world.

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Aloha, Australian Rules Footy – Hawaii The Start Of Something Big

North America

 Last week, World Footy News reported on the arrival of a new centre for Australian Rules football. Hawaii, better known for Pacific holidays, Pearl Harbour, Waikiki Beach and Kilauea, has some hardy enthusiasts getting together in Honolulu to create a new club – a club that could potentially develop like no club before it. 

Dallas McCulloch isn’t your average footy player. But his drive, along with a great team around him, is making positive things happen. They are onto something. Our interview with Dallas and his vision for the future makes for some very interesting reading. 

The prospects of a Pacific-wide Australian Rules football competition have been discussed for many years with many locations touted as potential venues. However, the arrival of Hawaii as a football destination might just add another dimension to that argument. 

Here is our chat with Dallas.

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Cox's Emergence May Spur Rethink On U.S. Combine

North America

Niall Seewang from ESPN reports on the impact that Collingwood’s Mason Cox and other USA products are having on decisions regarding future U.S Combines. The following is an extract from the original article. To read the full article, go to the link at the end of this extract. 

Mason Cox's emergence as a legitimate attacking weapon could spur the reintroduction of the AFL's U.S. Combine. 

The AFL had travelled to U.S. every year since 2012 to hold trials for American athletes -- often college basketballers, footballers and soccer players who miss out on professional contracts in their chosen sports -- but held no such event in 2018. 

However, it could be brought back in 2019, with the AFL set to make a decision on its future before the end of the year.

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Australian Rules Football Comes To Hawaii

Ryan Finnerty reports on Hawaii Public Radio about the development of an Australian Rules football club in Hawaii. In the wake of the recent USAFL Nationals in Racine, and the current Mason Cox mania, a Hawaiian football club is further proof of the increasing uptake of the game across the United States. Follow the link below for an audio interview detailing the club and its journey.

The interview is contextualised by the following introduction on the http://www.hawaiipublicradio.org/ website.

What do you get when you combine American football, rugby, soccer, and a few other sports into oneω A little game called Australian Rules Football. It’s one of the most popular, and rough, sports from the Land Down Under.

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Crows and Iron Maidens take out top USAFL Division titles

 The Austin Crows and San Francisco Iron Maidens sit atop the USAFL footy tree at the end of 2018 taking out the the Division 1 Men's and Women's Divisions respectively.  

Both teams know the feeling of holding the cup well, with this being the 3rd year out of four that Austin have taken out the competition and the third (or back to back to back) title for the San Francisco Iron Maidens.

The Crows easily accounted for the New York Magpies in the Semi Final to line up their shot against the 2017 Champions the Golden Gate Roos.  Golden Gate narrowly saw off the LA Dragons in their semi final but could not overcome the Crows who ran out five point winnners.  Austin Crwos 4.6 30 defeated Golden Gate Roos 4.1 25.

 

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Golden Gate solid in back to back bid - USAFL Nationals Day 1

North America

 It was a chilly, breezy, but sunny day in Racine Wisonsin.  Five divisions of men's footy and  two divisions of women's footy was played in good conditions. 

In the Men's Division 1 Pool A was dominated by last year's champions Golden Gate and Pool B was dominated by 2015 and 2016 Champions the Austin Crows.  Golden Gate will take on last year's runners up in their semi final tomorrow, while Austin will face the New York Magpies.

Division 1 Pool A    
New York Magpies defeated Denver Bulldogs
2.3.15
 
2.1.13
Golden Gate Roos defeated Denver Bulldogs
8.8.56
 
1.0.6
Golden Gate Roos defeated New York Magpies
5.2.32
 
0.1.1
     
Division 1 Pool B    
Los Angeles Dragons defeated Quebec Saints
6.1.37
 
1.5.11
Austin Crows defeated Quebec Saints
8.8.56
 
1.0.6
Austin Crows defeated Los Angeles Dragons
4.1.25
 
2.1.13

  

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