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This page is a quick snapshot of the status of Australian Football in Netherlands. For further information, browse our news items or use the search facility. If you wish to contact football officials from the country, please search our site for links to their leagues or clubs, including in our Atlas. If unsuccessful, we can normally assist with putting people in touch.
Approx population (2009): 16.6 million
National side: The Flying Dutchmen
Governing body: Dutch Australian Football Association
Den Haag Ooievaars
Primary contact / link: Dutch Australian Football Association
WFN Census (2004): 1 team, 15 players.
WFN World Ranking (2008): not ranked
History: Australian rules football was first played in the Netherlands around 2003, with the creation of the Dutch Australian Football Association (DAFA). This organisation later disappeared, although a team representing the Netherlands appeared at the 2005 EU Cup.
There was still no formal team or league in the Netherlands, but by late 2006 some steps had been taken with a group training and playing regularly in The Hague and the national team being nicknamed the Flying Dutchmen (de Vliegende Hollanders). 2007 saw the official reformation of the DAFA, with the Dutchmen playing their first international in over two years against Germany's Rheinland Lions.
2009 saw the beginning of rapid growth for the DAFA, with 6 scheduled home and away international games, plus plans for the establishment of 4 domestic teams, in Utrecht, Den Haag, Eindhoven and Amsterdam. The first domestic match played in Holland was a friendly between the newly-formed Utrecht Saints and the Rest of Holland played on May 9th in Utrecht.
The Flying Dutchmen finished second in the 2009 EU Cup, losing to England in the final.
Outlook (2010): The DAFA's first full season, involving Amsterdam, Den Haag, Eindhoven and Utrecht, will kick off in 2010. The DAFA are also looking into sending a side to the 2011 International Cup in Australia.
Other points of interest:
Last Updated: Wednesday, February 17 2010 @ 05:57 PM ACDT|Hits: 2,134