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Friday, January 18 2019 @ 11:33 am ACDT

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Fairy Tales do happen - Raiwaqa Bulldogs win AFL Fiji 2014 premiership

Oceania
Back in 2012 a photo surfaced on social media. It showed a young man wading into a creek to retrieve a footy. The caption read along the lines of “if you kick it in, you get it yourself”. It was a reference to the one and only football belonging to that club.

The club turned out to be the Raiwaqa Bulldogs, the youngest junior Australian Rules football team in Fiji. The photo cannot be found now, lost in the vacuum of social media feeds, but the club just won the 2014 AFL Fiji premiership. An incredible effort, given that less than two years ago their single football was their most valued possession.

The Fiji Times (online) ran a story detailing the events of grand final day:

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A footy holiday to Vanuatu - Part 3 - Footy ni Vanuatu style and umpiring up a sweat

Oceania

Having settled into Vanuatu as a tropical island paradise - it's Saturday morning footy time. Normally for me this is Auskick in suburban Melbourne. This Saturday it's a tad bit different; Vanuatu; tropical humidity; land crab holes; and I'll be umpiring today.

This is the third instalment of a Vanuatu travel diary/footy pilgrimage. Part of the objective of this series is to highlight footy on our door step in a country that anyone can justify visiting along with their whole family, or club. In A footy holiday to Vanuatu - Part 1 - boots and footys my family and I arrived with a bit of extra baggage and in A footy holiday to Vanuatu - Part 2 - Kazza field and those pesky crab holes we made our way to Kazza field - spotting familiar goal posts in unfamiliar territory.

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White River Demons take out SIAFL decider

Oceania

The following press release provided by SIAFL.

Solomon Islands AFL hosted the 2014 Grand Final on Thursday between the White River Demons and the Central Coast Eagles. The stage was set for an exciting game of football between these two powerhouse clubs. Both teams have dominated the 2014 home and away season and were close games in their previous encounters.

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SIAFL Grand Final set to wrap up testing season

Oceania

The 2014 SIAFL (Solomon Islands AFL) Grand Final takes place tomorrow afternoon in Honiara. With a season interrupted by a deadly and damaging storm early this year – the season culminates with the White River Demons taking on the Central Coast Eagles.

The match is scheduled for tomorrow (Thursday) – June 26th – at the King George VI field in Honiara. As per the poster below – SIAFL staff will be in attendance from 3pm onwards with the opening bounce at 4pm.

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A footy holiday to Vanuatu - Part 2 - Kazza field and those pesky crab holes

Oceania

A family holiday in June in Vanuatu - a great escape from winter in Melbourne. Staying at the Iririki Island Resort - we had plans for some simple and lazy resort time. However - we also had a Saturday morning date at Kazza Field and two big bags packed with 40+ pairs of footy boots and a couple of shiny new Sherrin match balls.

First though - our recovery day one in Port Vila from a 2am arrival and getting to bed after 4am

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A footy holiday to Vanuatu - Part 1 - boots and footys

Oceania

It's not uncommon for Australians - especially those south of the Murrumbidgee - to take a winter holiday to sunnier tropical locations and so it was the plan for my family to head to sunny Vanuatu across the first week or so of June. Of course one of my sons would pack a footy. Nothing too strange there. Perhaps what was more strange was a couple of bags containing 40+ pairs of donated footy boots and a couple of plastic wrapped brand new sherrin match footys.

(AFL) Vanuatu here we come! The following is in part tropical paradise travel diary and in part a WFN inspired footy pilgrimage.

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Wellington AFL Game Doubt?

Oceania

Questions are being raised about the future of AFL matches being hosted by Wellington.

Fewer than half of the 13,285 people who attended Wellington's AFL Anzac Day fixture paid face value for a ticket leaving its on-going future in jeopardy. However it would mirror the case for many promotional markets such as Western Sydney that many tickets in the initial seasons are ‘free and complimentaries’ to generate a following- particularly among the children in the region.

The Wellington city council is understood to have contributed $600,000 of ratepayer money to promote the game, but there was little public interest with the crowd down from 22,183 at the inaugural game in 2013.

"It's under review and hard questions are being asked about the return on investment to Wellington," said Deputy Mayor Justin Lester.

"It has the ability to be a centrepiece of next year's Anzac Day centenary celebrations, but a lot of work needs to be done.

"When it was introduced… it seems to have been a fairly clear case of over-promising and under-delivering. We want to change that. We have met with representatives from St Kilda and the AFL to make our concerns known and to review the situation."

"Whilst the crowd was down compared to last year, we're still very positive about the result given the impact of the school and Easter holiday period [which coincided with Anzac Day]," St Kilda representative Ben Davies said.

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Vanuatu's Kilip Andrew settles in for Olinda Ferny Creek

Oceania

In 2013 the Olinda Ferny Creek footy team from the Dandenongs region east of Melbourne travelled to Vanuatu post season for the perfect end of season trip after slogging it out in the Yarra Valley Mountain District Football League.

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Solomons duo daring in Darling Downs

Oceania

Francis Ramo and Peter Nuku jetted off earlier this year bound for Queensland (Australia) for a season of footy. As reported in the Solomon Star They were selected for the opportunity on the basis of their commitment and work ethic towards the SIAFL, their talent and their determination to go to Australia. It’s pleasing to see the a couple of months into this adventure that both are doing well playing with the Coolaroo Football Club.

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AFL New Zealand Name Their Annual Heritage Team

Oceania

AFLNZ have made their second annual selection of their Heritage team. To be eligible player must be born in New Zealand or have one parent born there. This is more stringent than the one for the NZ national rugby league team which has a handful of Aussie-born players. Anyone looking at the Rugby League world Cup would also see that eligibility criteria are looser than those applied in the selection of this team.
 

AFL New Zealand Heritage team selector Simon Black noted the broad pool of players to select from. “There is a significant number of players with New Zealand heritage running around the AFL, so we were able to fill a full team.”

AFL New Zealand CEO Robert Vanstam would like to see the team play a test match against Australia one day.  Vanstam believes the growing interest in AFL across the ditch, and from expat New Zealanders in Australia, means a trans-Tasman Test could replace the hybrid International Rules series against Ireland.

“Why would you ever want to play them with a round ball when you can play a real game of footy against another country?’’ he said.
 

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