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Independent News and Views from the International Aussie Rules Community

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    The colloquially, and probably somewhat inappropriately, named Bawbag Cup was played on the weekend at the Leith Academy in Edinburgh, Scotland. It was a great day for the Kingdom Kangaroos as they defended the title they won last year in a three-team round-robin competition. The competition was made all the more historic with the West Lothian Eagles taking the field as an official AFL Scotland/SARFL team. It was also the first game for the Tyne Tees Tigers as a new member of the SARFL competition in 2018.

    The West Lothian Eagles hit the field first against the more experienced Kangaroos. The final deficit was a four goal loss, but they were not blown off the park. According to their Facebook page, the only things that let the Eagles down was the lack of experience and game knowledge – two areas which will improve almost automatically the more games they play. The club was delighted with the form of the “first gamers” that took the field.


    In their second game against the Tyne Tees Tigers, the Eagles went down by just 15 points. They kept pressure on the Tigers from the outset and enjoyed kicking three goals themselves whilst keeping the Tigers to just five. The club has thrown down the gauntlet to the player to enjoy the experience and gather themselves for their biggest test yet, five likely games in the upcoming Haggis Cup on April 14th at the West of Scotland Rugby Club, Milngavie, Glasgow. The event is hosted by AFL Scotland.

    The Kingdom Kangaroos were delighted to defend the title from 2017 and add more silverware to their shelves. Despite a traffic accident delaying some of their players from being on time for the first game, the Kangaroos were still too good for all teams, going on to win the final against the Tyne Tees Tigers. The final score saw the Kingdom Kangaroos 7 7 49 too good for the Tyne Tees Tigers 4 4 28.

    The match also saw the first occasion where the Tyne Tees Tigers played in this, or any other, event as a part of the new AFL Scotland landscape – joining the SARFL for 2018 after having previously been a part of the AFLCNE competition. Whilst it would have been enjoyable for the Tigers to win the tournament, they would not be disappointed with their efforts in showing that they can travel and compete successfully on a Scottish stage.


    ...

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    It was tough going for both the Greater Western Sydney Giants and the Adelaide Crows at Blacktown International Sports Park in Sydney, as they played out the first draw of the 2018 AFLW season in wet conditions.

    Image Source: Twitter @GWSGIANTS

    Neither of the teams was able to break away with clean disposal and this is what’s expected in wet weather football. It was an extremely physical brand of football by both teams from the first siren to the final siren and it was a credit to both teams to play with such a high intensity and skill for the entire match. This showed at the final siren with nothing separating both teams.

     

     
    It was a tight tussle in the first quarter with great hard tackling from both teams in tough wet conditions. The Giants were able to score the first goal of the match after the Crows were unable to clear the ball out of defense, because Jessica Dal Pos stole the football and she kicked the football to Rebecca Beeson who marked the football and she nailed through the goal. The Crows kept the football in their forward line for about two minutes, which put pressure on the Giants defenders and eventually they were able to score a goal as Ellie Brush gave away the free kick to Courtney Cramey on a 25m out on the angle and she slotted through the goal nicely and the scores are leveled. The rain started to bucket down in the last five minutes of the quarter and made the game very tough for all players. At quarter time the scores were leveled. 
     
    In the second term the Giants kept the Crows goalless and they were only able to kick a solitary goal for the quarter. Britt Tully kicked the football forward into space in the Giants forward line and Cramer placed a hard knock on Courtney Gum and Gum was slow to get up, as she looked to be winded. Soon after due to the Giants having a lot more inside 50s and attacking play they scored the first goal of the second quarter. The Giants were rewarded a free kick and the Irish woman Cora Staunton had a set shot on goal and she snap kicked the football in her own unique “Gaelic way” on her side and nailed through the goal truly. Staunton was everywhere in the forward 50 for the Giants in the first half of the match and she showed how tough and hard she was in the wet as a player despite coming off a broken nose from last week. Late in the second quarter, Ruth Wallace pushed Alicia Eva behind play and Eva came to the bench sore. Ebony Marinoff remained to be on fire in the match and she already had 13 tackles at the main break. At half time in trying conditions in Western Sydney the Giants had an 8-point advantage over the Crows. 
     
    Both teams continued to play tough and hard football. It was a good old fashion slog the third quarter as neither team was able to score a goal. The only score to occur in the third term was three behinds. Eva showed how she is one tough nut, as she was everywhere and was playing unbelievable football for her Giants and did not take a step back despite being dealt with strongly late in the second term. The Crows had a lot of inside 50s, but their kicking and disposal efficiency let them down and as a result they could not capitalize with a major on the scoreboard. Erin McKinnon the Giants no.1 ruckman was carried of the ground by the trainers and looked like she has injured her lower leg. The margin at three quarter time was the Giants with a 9-point lead over the Crows. 
     
    Good news early in the last quarter, as Erin McKinnon started in the ruck. McKinnon looked to be in a bad way when she came off with what seemed to be a lower leg injury late in the third quarter. It was a great start by the Crows with a Wallace quick snap around the corner for a goal. The goal from Wallace was very “simply amazing!” Marinoff laid a big hit on Tully and Tully was on her haunches, because she was a bit slow to get up. The Giants defenders were under siege in the last term, as the Crows came out with all of the attacking play and they tied up the match with eight minutes left in the final quarter. In the last ten minutes of the football it was a hot football with both teams putting their bodies on the line and doing everything they could to get the goal. Scores remained leveled with less than four minutes left on the clock and both teams continued to play strong hard football. The tackling from both teams was top-notch and it was great to see players from both teams giving it their all to the very end. 
     
    So at the final siren the Giants and Crows played out our first draw in 2018 AFLW season. The scenes at the end of the match were heart wrenching from both teams, because all players gave it their all but none earnt four vital points for their team.
     
     

    GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY  1.1     2.3   2.6   2.7 (19)
    ADELAIDE                                    1.1    1.2   1.3    2.7 (19)

    GOALS
    Greater Western Sydney: Beeson, Staunton
    Adelaide: Cramey, Wallace 

    BEST
    Greater Western Sydney: Eva, Staunton, Beeson, Barr
    Adelaide: Marinoff, Randall, Wallace, Foley

    Crowd: 2,409

    ...

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    The Darwin Buffaloes have taken an enormous stride towards winning their first NTFL premiership since the 2005/06 season by downing the Nightcliff Tigers in the Qualifying Final at TIO Stadium. It sets up Second Semi-Final showdown with Southern Districts Crocs next weekend – the team that won their last premiership the following year in 2006/07.

    Nightcliff enjoyed the early running, hitting the scoreboard regularly and heading to the first break with a 17-point lead. The Buffaloes were desperate to bridge the gap, and did so by narrowing the Nightcliff lead to just two points by the half time break. By the final change, score were level in a tight tussle – the ideal finals match.

    Nightcliff looked like getting away, kicking the first two goas of the final quarter, but from there it was all Buffaloes. They kicked the last four goals of the match to win by 14 points. Adam Sambono starred for the Buffaloes with six goals and generally running rampant. Up forward, Darren Shillabeer kicked another three. But the big story was the Buffaloes played as a team and will be keen to take that “one in, all in” approach into next weekend’s match.

    Final Score: Darwin Buffaloes 15 12 102 d Nightcliff Tigers 13 10 88

    The St Mary’s “Green Machine” posted a warning of their own when they ended the season for the Tiwi Bombers, eventually running out 52-point victors. The damage was done in a sizzling first quarter when he Saints kicked six goals seven behinds for the term to a solitary behind from the shell-shocked Bombers. That dominant start would prove a bridge to far for the Tiwi team.

    Despite winning each of the next two quarters in a match deserving of its finals intensity, the Bombers could only get back to within 27 points by the final change. They were not without a chance, but in a tightly played defensive game it would be difficult. St Mary’s, however, had their own ideas and steadied the ship with six final quarter goals to cruise in the end to a big victory.

    St Mary’s will now meet a shaky Nightcliff Tigers in the First Semi-Final next weekend to fight for a Preliminary final berth. Purely on form, the Saints will now be favourites. But Nightcliff didn’t finish second on the ladder for nothing and will come out snarling at the Saints and determined to deny them yet another flag chance.

    Final Score: St Mary’s 15 15 105 d Tiwi 7 11 53


    Next weekend’s semi-finals will see the Southern Districts Crocs taking on the Darwin Buffaloes at TIO Stadium in the late match. The winner will go straight into the Grand Final, whilst the loser has a double chance. The earlier match will be the cutthroat final between St Mary’s and Nightcliff. The winner will go on to the Preliminary final, whilst it will be curtains for the lose ...

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  • 02/28/18--14:22: Kangaroos defend Bawbag Cup
  • They say history is written by the victors.  In this case the victors are the Kingdom Kangaroos and this version of their historic three-peat was submitted to us by Sandy Bell.

    The Kingdom Kangaroos won the annual Preseason Bawbag Cup for the 3rd time in 3 years on Saturday 24th March. The annual warm up tournament competed by the Tyne Tee Tigers, West Lothian Eagles and Fife’s own Kingdom Kangaroos.

    The Kangaroos preparation was thrown into disarray when the entire midfield was a late withdrawal due to a road traffic accident on route to the game. This resulted in the Roos taking to the field in the first game against the Eagles with only 8 players (and no subs). Despite playing a man short the Roos experience and commitment at the ball kept the game close. The highlight was a spectacular contested Mark by veteran Player/Coach Wayne Sullivan. The Eagles utilising the strong breeze held onto a handy 3 goal lead at the half time that included a well crafted team goal by half forward Jason Forrest. Kangaroo Reinforcements arrived shortly after the restart allowing for a 9 vs 9 battle. The impact was swift with forward Mark Flanagan kicking 3 goals in a devastating 5 minute spell. The 1st game was closed out with make shift Ruckman Jamie Koo kicking a 60metre plus torpedo to seal a famous victory against the odds.

    The 2nd game of the tournament was Tyne Tee Tigers vs West Lothian Eagles with the victor meeting the Kangaroos in the decider. In a pulsating contest the Eagles coaching staff came close to masterminding a win against the English opposition. The Tigers prevailed setting up the third Kangaroo Vs Tigers Bawbag Cup final in three years.

    As expected the final was a committed affair with the Roo midfield constantly pumping the ball deep into the forward line. Despite having a limited bench to rotate players the Roos superior fitness and skill eventually carved out clear chances. The 2 goal lead at half time against the wind was game changing and allowed the Roos to control the contest to the end, eventually running out winners 40 points to 24. Man of the match for the Roos was Jack Chalmers whose tireless running and ability to read the play bodes well for the season. Special mention to Sandy Bell who was coaxed out of retirement for the cup and played every minute of the tournament.

    The Kangaroos are currently recruiting players for the upcoming season. Training is free and the club have friendlies arranged in April and May. if you would like to experience this fun, inclusive dynamic sport, contact the Kangaroos via their Facebook page Kingdom Kangaroos arfc or contact Mark on 07504272269

    ...


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    As the AF’s JLT Community Series pre-season competition wriggles its way around the country, North Queensland is preparing for its own extravaganza of AFL talent across March as first Townsville and then Cairns host matches. Townsville gets under way this weekend when the Gold Coast Suns and the Geelong Cats met in their JLT fixture. Cairns will then host the Round 1 AFL match between the Gold Coast Suns and North Melbourne Kangaroos.

    The city of Townsville was looking forward to the Gary Ablett grudge match. With Ablett leaving the Sun and returning to his native Geelong last trade season, it gave the local fans the chance to watch an old-fashioned stoush between two past and present cat owners. Sadly, a hamstring injury will see Ablett ruled out of the match.

    But, the people of Townsville would not be too disheartened. They will still host a great game of footy between the rising Suns from their home state and a Geelong side than has enjoyed an era of success – including three flags – since 2007.

    Preparations are already under way at Riverway Stadium (formerly known as Tony Ireland Stadium) to entertain the enthusiastic crowds on match day as well as local events in the lead up to the match involving both teams mixing with the Townsville community. On the day, the usual local curtain raiser matches will be played featuring local talent. The Gold Coast Suns will also hold their Community Camp in the city, interacting with kids as they bring the game to the people.

    For more information on events in Townsville, visit the AFL Townsville Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/afltownsville/

    The Townsville City Council website states, “Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said having the Gold Coast Suns play Geelong in the first match of Gary Ablett’s return shows that we are a major sporting destination in Australia.

    “Townsville is cementing its reputation as the premier sporting city in Northern Australia,” Cr Hill said.

    “This game between the Suns and the Cats should be one for the fans to savour with Gary Ablett back in the blue and white against the team he used to captain.

    “It is important that we support the game through buying tickets as Townsville wants to host a regular season AFL game in the next couple of years.”

    Cr Hill said these major sporting events are a big economic opportunity for local businesses.

    “Hosting major sporting events such as the AFL, provides a real economic boost to the region and helps to create jobs for locals,” Cr Hill said.

    Councillor Maurie Soars, an active member of the Townsville AFL community, said he is excited to see the national competition come to the city.

    “Townsville is a very sport-centric city, and we have a lot of talented athletes competing all over the world,” Cr Soars said.

    “Bringing the AFL competition to Townsville is a great way to encourage locals to get involved and develop AFL in North Queensland.

    “Townsville is a key recruitment area for the Gold Coast Suns and I hope that locals head out and support what is sure to be an exciting game.”

    The match is the first of two for the region. Just three weeks later Cairns will host their historic Round One match when the Gold Coast Suns hold a home game against North Melbourne Kangaroos at Cazalys Stadium. It continues a run of hosting AFL premiership matches that goes back to 2011 – each featuring the Gold Coast Suns.

    Due to the Commonwealth Games being held on the Gold Coast, the Suns have been displaced from Metricon Stadium until mid-way through the season. The moving of a home match to Cairns is part of their strategy for 2018. It is also a huge bonus for Cairns to have a season opener.

    Fans in Cairns may also get to celebrate seeing two Cairns products in Jarrod Harbrow and Jack Bowes play again at Cazalys where they started their junior careers.

    This weekend, however, it is Townsville’s time to shine – despite recent wet weather. That will not stop fans descending on Riverway Stadium for the Suns and the Cats –Ablett or no Ablett ...

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  • 03/01/18--17:06: Mumbai Footy Cup 2018

  • The new season of footy in Mumbai, India, will soon be announced and get underway. Run under the direction of Reclink India and Mumbai Footy, the competition premiered last year featuring teams from across Mumbai – India’s largest city and the capital city of the state of Maharashtra

    Co-founder and national coordinator of the Mumbai Footy League, Sumesh Sawant stated, “last year we played Mumbai Footy League which lasted for two months instead of [the] Mumbai Footy Cup. For this year the dates are not out yet for Mumbai Footy Cup but most likely it will be happening somewhere between March to May.”

    Last year’s competition featured two older clubs – the Mahim Cats and the Matunga Tigers – with the addition of the Churchgate Lions, Grant Road Bombers, Mumbai Central Giants and the Charni Road Eagles in the first domestic suburban home and away style competition in India.

    Dates and teams for the 2018 edition of the competition will be advised shortly. The competition, whilst not run as part of AFL India, remains a major part of development of the game in India – especially Mumbai – as the game reaches even bigger audiences and becomes a part of the talent pathway for kids to adults.

    Reclink India and Mumbai Footy have been working very closely with local schools to increase participation, both at school level and moving towards involvement with Mumbai-based clubs. A more detailed story regarding the work within schools will follow soon.

    In addition to the schools program and Mumbai Footy Cup, the All India Footy Carnival 2018 will be held in Mumbai in October. The combination of each of these components will see a huge spike in interest in the game. The pathway from schools to clubs to a national competition is now clearer and very exciting.

    For information about the work of Reclink India and Mumbai Footy, visit their Facebook page and website at: https://www.facebook.com/AussieRulesFootyMumbai/ and http://australianrulesfootballmumbai.com/ ...

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    According to Matt Thomson on the www.afl.com.au website, he AFL will be taking the new AFLX version of the game into Asia on a bigger scale very soon. Whilst the jury is still out to some degree on the success of the game here in Australia with the AFL clubs involved as part of the pre-season schedule, smaller versions of the game have already been successfully adapted across the world through local leagues.

    These amendments have included smaller grounds – rugby and soccer fields – smaller player numbers (predominantly using an AFL 9’s format adapted to include normal playing rules) and other adjustments. But the move into Hong Kong (see below) might be the catalyst for more countries to consider adapting further to the seven per side AFLX format.

    AFLX appears headed to Asia, with the prospect of a November tournament in Hong Kong on the League's agenda.      

     It follows three experimental tournaments last month in Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney.      

    "We've literally just been talking about it," League chief executive Gillon McLachlan told radio station 3AW on Friday morning.      

    "I think the future's enormous," he said.     

    "I think you can have a distinct product potentially with different owners, you can involve past players.      

    "I'd like to see us have a crack at it in November somewhere into Asia, we've got venue availability, new audiences are closer to the game … it's just a bit easier for new people to consume.      

    "(Maybe we) take 10 players to Hong Kong, or 12 players, after the draft and you have to take two of your top two draft picks, maybe you have to have one recently retired player and a number of other players and make it a bit interesting and have a look at it.      

    "They're some of the ideas we're kicking around."    

    AFLX is a shorter, modified version of Australian football played on a rectangle field with teams of seven players and three on the bench.  

    The original story can be found at: http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-03-02/afls-xpansion-plans-asia-on-the-radar

    Picture Credit: Fremantle FC

      ...


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    The match between the Melbourne Demons and Brisbane Lions at Casey Fields was a game of one per centers with great strong tackling and smothering pressure. This whole match was played with a finals type intensity and a real arm wrestle.

    The Dees came into this round 5 encounter after they had 2 losses on the road, so they were desperate for a win to keep their 2018 AFLW finals hopes alive.


    The Dees came out all guns blazing in the first term led by their skipper Daisy Pearce who kicked two goals and she led from the front. Pearce slotted through the first goal of the match from a stoppage and her second from a stoppage near the goal square off a snap kick around her body. The Dees had higher disposal efficiency in the opening quarter than the Lions with an efficiency of about 60%. Kaitlyn Ashmore also started well for the Lions. Both teams made it hard for each other to break away clear from stoppages due to the strong tackling by both teams. The Dees with all of the attacking play early in this match and placed the Lions defense under heaps of pressure, but to the Lions credit their defense held up strongly and well. At quarter time the Dees kept the Lions scoreless and led by 15 points.

    It was a different story in the second quarter, as the Lions were able to move the football more smoothly and efficiently forward. The Lions had a lot more of the football, as they lifted their intensity to match the intensity of the Dees. In the second term the Lions kept the Dees goalless and the Lions were able to score their first goal of the match. Sabrina Frederick-Traub snap kicked the Lions first goal of the match and the first of the second quarter after she used her strength to out muscle two Lions players. In particular the smothering from the Lions had been superb to start the match and the Lions defense held up very well despite being under siege by the Dees who had 21 inside 50s to 9. Both teams continued their strong tackling pressure. Pearce played great football in the first half of the match. She led from the front with 15 disposals and 2 goals. The Lions were down by 11 points at half time after they were able to shift some of the momentum back in the second term.

    In the third term the Lions continued with the momentum they had in the second quarter and they slowly were able to get on top of the Dees. Brittany Gibson from 40m from goal kicked towards goal but the football fell short into the arms of Frederick-Traub who marked the football with a strong contested mark. Frederick-Traub kicks a banana kick off the side of her boot slotted through the goal nicely. Tegan Cunningham from the goal square on slight angle booted through a much-needed goal for the Dees after she took a strong contested mark in the pack. Courage shown by Hildebrand and Cunningham whose heads both collided in the air, as they both went fast and hard at the football. They both were slow to get up, but great to see that they both seem to be ok walking off the bench in the hands of their teams trainers. At three quarter time the Dees had a 14-point advantage over the Lions.

    The final stanza continued to be a strong and tight tussle from both teams who did not drop off in intensity. Kate Lutkins kicked the football long to Frederick-Traub who marked the football strongly in the forward half of the ground for the Lions. Frederick-Traub kicked the football forward and Gibson took a strong diving mark deep in attack for the Lions to slot through the first goal of the final quarter. Kate Hore booted through a important timely snap kick at goal for the Dees from the stoppage after the football fell out of the pack. After a hard collision late in the third term, Hildebrand and Cunningham did not take any further part in the match and Cunningham was assessed for concussion. In the final quarter, Frederick-Traub and Pearce both collided and Pearce was slow to get to her feet, but she showed her toughness as she ran to the bench even though she looked sore. Frederick-Traub out of the ruck slotted through her third goal of the match. The last couple of minutes of the match were high-pressured and the Lions kept the football deep in attack, as they tried to put a stop to the Dees finals hopes in 2018. However the Dees held on and were victors by 6 points at their home ground down in Casey over a valiant Lions outfit that never gave in till the final siren.

    Therefore the Dees kept their finals hope alive in a pulsating end to the match. Pearce played a beauty of a match for her Dees after she had been down in form over the last two weeks and she led from the front, because she was able to get her Dees over the line in a action-packed match of AFLW ...

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    The Greater Western Sydney Giants keep their finals hopes alive in the second season of the AFLW after they ran out 18-point winners over the Fremantle Dockers at the Fremantle Oval.

    It was a do or die match for both teams who needed a win to keep there seasons alive. The Dockers came into the match after a loss last round to the Lions and the Giants came off a draw in the wet against the Crows.


    From halfway through the second quarter till the final siren, the Giants played a relentless brand of football, because they did not drop off any of their high intensity and pressure football.

    It was a tight contested match in the first quarter. The Giants were dominant early with a lot of the possession and heaps of attacking play. In the first quarter the Giants tackled strongly and most of the match was played in their forward half of the ground. This dominant play by the Giants made it difficult for the Dockers to get it out of their defensive 50. The Giants scored the opening goal of the contest after Pepa Randall kicked the football long to a pack and Phoebe McWilliams took a strong contested mark and from about 15m she slotted through the goal truly. Soon after the Giants scored the first goal, the Dockers responded with a quick major of their own after Amy Lavell kicked the football to Stacey Barr who marked the football on the lead and a 50m penalty was given to Barr. The 50m penalty brought Barr to the goal square and she kicked the major from the goal square to level the scores. Late in the opening quarter, Courtney Gum kicked long to Cora Staunton the Irish goal sneak prodigy who dropped the mark but Staunton crumbed the football cleanly and scored the goal of a snap kick from 40m out. The Giants at quarter time led by one goal in a strong physical start to the match.

    The Giants kept the Dockers goalless in the second quarter, as they owned the term with the only 2 goals. Early on in the second term the Giants defense were under a bit of pressure but their defense held up well. Then halfway through the second quarter the Giants begun to get on top of the Dockers with their slicker ball movement, their great strong tackles and pressure all over the ground. The Giants scored the first goal of the second term after Rebecca Beeson handballed to her captain in Amanda Farrugia who on the run snap kicked through the crucial goal for her Giants from 25m out. Late in the first half, Staunton hand passed to Gum and the 36 year old slotted through the running goal for the Giants. This was classy play from Courtney Gum and Staunton who were both able to open their forward line up and score the goal. This helped open up a 17-point lead for the Giants over the Dockers at the main break, as they continued to play a very tough physical brand of football. Gum continued her strong form for the Giants with 10 disposals and a goal.

    In the third term, the Giants continued to control the momentum in the game over the Dockers. The Giants kept the Dockers goalless again in the third quarter as they went on to score the only 2 goals of the quarter in a dominant display by them. Beeson scored the Giants first goal of the second half, because she was dealt with late with high contact after she took the mark, so a 50m penalty was given to her and Beeson booted through the goal nicely from 25m out on a slight angle. The midfielders for the Giants made it hard for the Dockers to break away with clear possessions through the centre of the ground. Another 50m penalty was given this time to the Dockers and Gabby O’Sullivan from about 30m out nailed through a much-needed goal for her side. Staunton continued her strong pressure up forward of the Giants, as she kicked long to a pack in the goal square where Jacinda Barclay marked strongly and slotted through the goal from the top of the goal square. At three quarter time the Dockers had a 23-point deficit.
    The Giants continued to be ruthless in the final stanza with their pressure on and off the ball, because they made it hard for the Dockers to shift any of the momentum their way in the term. Stephanie Cain kicked the football long inside her attacking 50 and the football dribbled through for the first goal of the last quarter with three and half minutes left in the match. The Giants were too good in the end, as they ran out 18-point winners over the Dockers in the west. Gum continued her standout year in the midfield for the Giants, as she finished off with 16 touches and a goal. The Giants strong marking forwards in McWilliams and Staunton were the difference in the end.

    FREMANTLE 1.0 1.2 2.3 3.3 (21)
    GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY 2.0 4.1 6.2 6.3 (39)

    GOALS
    Fremantle: Barr, O'Sullivan, Cain
    GWS Giants: McWilliams, Staunton, Farrugia, Gum, Beeson, Barclay

    BEST
    Fremantle: Antonio, Cain, Hooker, Donnellan, Filocamo, Webb
    GWS Giants: Gum, Brush, McWilliams, Eva, Barclay, McKinnon

    INJURIES
    Fremantle: Nil
    GWS Giants: Nil

    Reports: Nil

    Umpires: Simmonds, Johansen, McPhee

    Official crowd: 2571 at Fremantle Ov ...

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    The reigning premiers the Crows were too polished in the end for the Blues when they needed to be in the match, as they won by 35 points at their home ground the Norwood Oval. This match was played with an extremely high intensity and pressure from both teams. The Blues were in the contest for most of the match with their gameplay and it was just their wayward kicking in front of the big sticks that let them down.

    Image Source: Twitter @Adelaide_FC

    It was a high-pressured game from both teams in the first quarter. The Crows took their chances early in front of goal with two goals to the Blues four behinds, as the Blues kicking in front of goal was wayward and let them down. Sarah Perkins hand passed to Ruth Wallace who snap kicked the goal from 20m out for a nice team goal for the opening goal of the first term. Wallace was on fire for the Crows up forward, as she nailed through her second goal of the match of a snap kick around her body.

    The Crows placed the Blues defense under immense pressure in the first quarter and the Blues had a lot of the football too in their forward half but could not capitalize on the scoreboard with majors until late in the quarter. Darcy Vescio was the one who set up the important goal, as she kicked a torpedo towards her forward 50 and Tayla Harris ran onto the football and nailed through an important goal for the Blues with four seconds left in the first quarter. As a result of the goal the Blues were only down by 4 points at quarter time over the Crows in a strong physical start to the match.

    The Crows had a strong dominant second quarter, because they outscored the Blues four goals to one despite the high intensity and physicality in the game continuing. However the Crows were able to get on top of Blues as they kicked four consecutive goals. At the start of the second quarter, the Blues via Vescio scored the first goal of the term and took the lead but the Crows responded with a goal of their own as they regained the lead back via Eloise Jones who kicked the goal from 35m out on a slight angle. Jones with a classy finish with a snap kick at goal and she booted through the goal truly. The Crows won the clearance in the centre again and Jasmyn Hewitt slotted through the quick snap kick at goal after she received the handball from Erin Phillips. Jessica Sedunary cleared the football out of the middle and kicked the football to McCormick who marked strongly in the forward 50 and McCormick put through the goal nicely for the Crows. The Crows at the main break held a 23-point advantage over the Blues.

    This match continued to be a tough one played by both teams in the third stanza with one stoppage after another and this was reflected on the scoreboard at the end of the third quarter with only one behind being scored for the entire term. Katie Loynes copped a heavy knock to her head and blood streamed rapidly from her head and she ran off to the bench. The Blues were dominant in the third quarter with the majority of the attacking play in their forward half of the ground, but they did not have much fortune when it came to getting some reward for all their effort on the scoreboard as they could only score a behind. Credit to the Blues who kept the Crows scoreless for the entire third quarter. The Crows held a 20-point lead over the Blues at three quarter time.

    Early on in the third quarter, Erin Phillips was on the bench being iced and word from the Crows said they were managing her quad that she previously injured. Phillips did not play out the second half of the match.

    In the final quarter, the Crows scored the only two goals of the term. There first goal was set up by Perkins who hand passed to Wallace over the top who ran into an open goal and put the nail through the coffin that put an end to the Blues season. The Crows scored their first goal since the second term. Sedunary scored the last goal of the match for the Crows after she marked the football from a forward stoppage and she slotted through the goal nicely between the big sticks. The reigning premiers finals chances are still well and truly alive as they were 35-point victors over a Blues outfit that fought hard till the end, but their wayward kicking in front of goal was what let them down at the final siren. The wayward kicking in front of goal by the Blues is what has stopped them from winning more matches this AFLW season.

    GOALS
    Adelaide: Wallace 3, Jones 2, McCormick, Hewett, Sedunary
    Carlton: Harris, Vescio 

    BEST 
    Adelaide: Wallace, Randall, Jones, Marinoff, Phillips, Rajcic
    Carlton: Loynes, S.Hosking, Harris, Moody, Audley, Gay 

    INJURIES 
    Adelaide: Phillips (quad), Cramey (hamstring)
    Carlton: Nil 

    Reports: Nil

    Umpires: Mirabile, Strybos, Crosby

    Official crowd: 5970 at Norwood Oval ...


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    The top placed Western Bulldogs held on to win by 8 points over the bottom placed Collingwood, after the Pies came at the Dogs late in the final quarter at Moe.

    Image Source: Twitter @BulldogsW

    It was a very high intensity aggressive game of football, which saw Steph Chiocci and Libby Birch reported in the first half of the match. There was heaps of pushing and shoving in this match in the first two quarters. The Pies came at the Dogs late in the final quarter, but the Dogs held on to win by 8 points over the bottom placed Pies.

    The match started as a physical encounter between the Pies and Dogs. However halfway through the first quarter the Dogs begun to get on top in the contest over the Pies. Steph Chiocci was reported early in the first term with high contact, as she did a hip and shoulder to Libby Birch’s head and Birch came to the bench holding a towel to the side of her head. The Dogs scored the first goal of the match and Ellie Blackburn who kicked long to goal set up this goal and it dribbled towards goal to Bonnie Toogood who crumbed the football and nailed through the goal.

    Moana Hope kicked it short to Meg Hutchins who was given a 50m penalty and from the goal square she scored the goal for the Pies. Aisling Utri slotted through a nice goal of a snap kick for the Dogs second goal of the match. Lauren Tesoreiro does not give the football back to Aasta O’Connor, so O’Connor was awarded with a 50m penalty. So she lined up from 40m out and her goal splits the middle as she booted through the goal nicely. The Dogs led by 16 points over the Pies at quarter time.

    This match continued to be frenetic in the second quarter and heaps of free kicks were awarded in this term as a result. Caitlyn Edwards has been awarded a free kick and she slotted through the goal truly between the big sticks from about 25m out for a much-needed goal for the Pies. Emma Kearney was given a free kick from about 50m out, so she kicked the football long towards goal and the football fell to ground metres from goal and Brooke Lochland soccer kicked the football of the ground for a goal. In the second quarter, the umpire reported Birch after high contact on Moana Hope.

    Amelia Barden was given a free kick after she was dealt with high by Hannah Scott. Barden responded with a quick goal for the Pies from about 20m out. Late in the second term, Brittany Bonnici swung Kearney into the fence and they pushed and shoved each other. As a result the Dogs are given a 50m penalty. At the main break the Pies were down by 12 points in a fiery clash.

    At the start of the third stanza the Dogs were able to strike with the first goal. This goal from the Dogs came after they won the clearance and Kearney kicked the football long inside 50 and Lochland marked with a strong contested mark and she slotted through her second goal of the match. Edwards was given a free kick and she nailed through the goal from about 20m out. She scored the quick reply for the Pies to become the first multiple goal scorer in this match.

    The Pies made a mess of the football in their defensive 50, as Toogood intercepted a Pies kick and Toogood with great teamwork found Blackburn who she hand passed to. Blackburn kicked an easy goal from the goal square. This third quarter tight tussle from both teams but it was not as physical as the first half of the match. The Dogs had a 17-point advantage on the scoreboard over the Pies at three quarter time.

    The Pies controlled the early stages of the fourth quarter, but they were not able to capitalize on the scoreboard with goals for their effort. They only managed to kick two behinds. Nicole Callinan booted through the first goal of the last quarter from the goal square. Chloe Molloy went forward after she has played predominantly in the backline for the Pies late in the fourth quarter. As a result, Molloy took a strong mark inside 50 and she kicked the goal nicely between the big sticks from 35m out. Molloy scored her first ever goal in her AFLW career. Christina Bernardi kicked a timely goal for the Pies after she was able to break away clear towards goal and she kicked the goal from 35m out.

    The Dogs held on to win by 8 points in Moe after a late fight by the Pies who kicked the last two goals of the match. It was looking like the Pies were going to run over the top of the Dogs late in the match and cause another upset like they did up in Darwin against the Melbourne Football Club. Blackburn played a great captains game at Moe today, as she led from the front for the entire match and she finished the match with 17 disposals and one goal.

    It was a great captain's game played by Blackburn. After this match the Pies are well and truly out of the finals race and the Dogs are flag favourites.

    COLLINGWOOD              1.0   3.0   4.2   6.5   (41)                 
    WESTERN BULLDOGS    3.4   4.6   6.7   7.7   (49)         
     
    GOALS
    Collingwood: Edwards 2, Hutchins, Barden, Molloy, Bernardi
    Western Bulldogs: Lochland 2, Toogood, Utri, O'Connor, Blackburn, Callinan
     
    BEST
    Collingwood: Garner, D'Arcy, Edwards, King, McIntosh
    Western Bulldogs: Blackburn, Conti, Kearney, Lamb, Ferres
     
    INJURIES
    Collingwood: Nil
    Western Bulldogs: Nil
     
    Reports: Chiocci (Collingwood) reported for high contact on Birch (Western Bulldogs) in the first quarter, Birch (Western Bulldogs reported for striking Hope (Collingwood) in the second quarter.
     
    Umpires: Young, Curtis, Heffernan
     
    Crowd: 2700 at Ted Summerton Reserve, Moe
      ...


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    Lyon’s own ALFA Lions have pushed their claims to defend their CNFA Leo Lagrange premiership title from last season with a big win against the Bordeaux Bombers. The win is their second of the season and if they can grab a win in their next match against the Aviators (not a guarantee) they would go to a final round match against the Cockerels in Paris hoping for a win – and loads of luck – to grab fourth place.

    A big first quarter against the Bombers set up a 47-point lead by half time for the Lions. Bordeaux challenged in the third quarter, pegging back the lead, but the Lions steadied again in the final term to run out comfortable 71-point winners. The result has all but ended the Bordeaux team’s finals chances, but saw he Lions leapfrog them into being one of the likely remaining five finals chances.


    However, it will be a battle against huge odds for the Lions. Already, the Toulouse Hawks, Paris Cockerels and probably Cergy-Pontoise Coyotes will play semi-finals – based either on current wins or likely wins in remaining rounds. It will mean that the Lions cannot drop another game and they need to hope that the Cockatoos drop at least one of theirs. One thing is for certain – for the Lions to defend their title, they cannot make a mistake for the rest of the season.

    In the other match of the round, the Cergy-Pontoise Coyotes almost cemented their finals chances with a resounding thumping of the luckless Perpignan Tigers. The 115-point win was a good opportunity for the Coyotes to sharpen their skills in the run to the finals. They host the Bordeaux Bombers next, then travel to meet the Toulouse Hawks in the final round – a match that will be like a finals match anyway.

    Round Six will be completed next weekend when the Paris teams host the Toulouse teams – the big match will see the Cockerels host the Toulouse Hawks, whilst the Cockatoos will host the Aviators in a game that they must win to ward of the challenge from the Lions.

    Weekend Scores:

    ALFA Lions 121 d Bordeaux Bombers 50
    Cergy-Pontoise Coyotes 159 d Perpignan Tigers 44
    ...

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    As most predicted, both the Dubai Dragons and the Multiplex Bulls have won their final round matches and will now go on to meet once again in the AFL Middle East Grand Final. The Dragons outlasted a determined and resilient Falcons team in Abu Dhabi, whilst the Bulls hammered the Dingoes to tune up for the big day in powerful style.

    The clash between the Abu Dhabi Falcons and the Dubai Dragon was a willing affair. Both sides had points to prove – one to throw the dice once more for a finals shot, the other to assert themselves again as flag favourites. By half -time the Dragons led by just five points, with both teams equal for scoring shots. It was a more dominant Dragons outfit in the second half – but not before the Falcons gave them tough workout. In the end it was the Dragons winning by 43-points to go through the home and away rounds again undefeated.


    The Abu Dhabi Falcons ended the season with just two wins, yet they took the game up to every opponent across the season. If they can grab one or two recruits and refine their playing style further, the Falcons could well be the new challenger for the 2018/19 season. But for now they can look back on their efforts this season and plan with justifiable confidence.

    The Multiplex Bulls were on a mission of their own, which was bad luck for the Dubai Dingoes. The Bulls are leaving no stone unturned in their quest to beat the Dragons in the grand-final and their performance against the Dingoes was one of a team intent on attacking at all costs. They have until March 16th to prepare for the biggest match of the year and kicking winning scores is a part of that preparation. Their 127-point win against the Dingoes was certainly evidence that nothing will be left to chance.

    The Dragons have won five of the past six premierships. They have defeated the Multiplex Bulls in the past three of those. The Dragons want more and will do everything in their immense power to win another. But the pain felt by the Bulls over the past three seasons could have derailed them. It hasn’t, and they are back for another shot – this time armed with more anger, pain, determination and attitude than ever before. Beware the wounded bull.

    This might be one of the most fascinating, and certainly historic, premiership deciders seen in the league’s history – whether the Dragons enter the rarefied air of a four-peat flag performance or whether the Bull’s time will finally come.

    All will be answered on March 16th in Duba ...

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    For the ninth consecutive occasion, the Southern Districts Crocs have lost a semi-final and after leading the ladder all year they now face the prospect of going out of the NTFL finals in straight sets unless they can reverse their fortunes. Their loss to the Darwin Buffaloes could be costly, but for Buffaloes’ fans, it is manna from heaven as they contemplate the now real possibility of a premiership – just one win away.

    It would be the second successive year that the Crocs topped the home and away ladder and won the minor premiership, only to stumble as soon as their finals matches began. The team would be shaken badly by the outcome of their match and its ramifications, but they didn’t finish on top of the ladder for no reason – they are a class act and will bounce back next weekend in the Preliminary Final against the Nightcliff Tigers.


    The Darwin Buffaloes have waited twelve long years for another flag opportunity. Since defeating Saint to win the 2005/06 flag, the Buffaloes have not been back to a grand final – until now. Fans will dare to dream now that the club’s 24th premiership is on the horizon.

    It is remarkable that the Buffaloes have turned their season around. Back in Round 5 and then Round 7 the team kicked just two goals in each match (significantly against both Crocs and Tigers) and had to find scoring options to even reach the finals. Now, after downing both of those teams in the past two weeks, the Buffaloes know they can compete victoriously against each. They have to be a strong chance to win the flag.

    As has been the case so often in finals, a good start can set up a game. The Buffaloes got away to a huge seven goal to one start in the first quarter. As much as the Crocs tried to claw back into the game, the Buffaloes had answers. When they didn’t, Mother Nature helped. After lightning stopped the game for 20 minutes during the third quarter, and TIO Stadium was almost submerged, the Crocs knew they were up against it to overhaul the Buffaloes in conditions better suited to freestyle swimming than football. Despite a last quarter fightback, Crocs just couldn’t bridge the gap, going down to the Buffaloes by 20 points.

    Whilst the Buffaloes had dual attacking options in Darren Shillabeer and Adam Sambono with bags of goals, Crocs struggled to find enough avenues to goal with Dean Staunton, Rory O’Brien and Ed Barlow nabbing two each.

    The Nightcliff Tigers have kept their flag chances well and truly alive by defeating St Mary’s in the other elimination Semi-Final. The Green Machine held sway at the quarter-time and half-time breaks, albeit narrowly. However, a withering even goal to nil third quarter by the Tigers set up victory for the Nightcliff crew. Despite the Saints fighting back in the final quarter, it was a bridge too far to chase down a six-goal deficit. The Tigers went on to record an impressive 24-point win and will now meet the Southern District Crocs in next weekend’s Preliminary Final.

    It was strong team effort from the Tigers. Kyle Emery booted three goals, whilst former Saint, Cameron Ilett, was amongst the Tigers’ best players. With his knowledge of the opposition, he became a key part of the Tiger planning and ultimate victory. Peter Macfarlane booted three goals for the Saints to take his season tally to 45 and finishing in second place on the goal kicking behind Crocs’ star Will Farrer.

    Next weekend’s Preliminary Final will be played at TIO Stadium on Saturday night at 7.00pm. The Crocs and Tigers have met twice this season with victory to the Crocs on both occasions. Their last scheduled meeting in Round 14 was washed out with points shared. This next encounter is sure to be a beauty with the winner to take on the Darwin Buffaloes for the 2017/18 flag.

    Final Scores:
    Nightcliff Tigers 11 10 76 d St Marys 7 10 52
    Darwin Buffaloes 13 10 88 d Southern Districts Crocs 10 8 68


    ...

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    In recent weeks we have seen some tremendous initiatives to develop the game of Australian Rules football across the world. From player drafts and new urban leagues in Colombia (see Bombers, Bullants and Aguilas Arrive in Bogotá) to school and ministry driven national tournaments in East Africa (see Something Amazing Happening In East Africa) individuals, clubs and leagues are finding innovative ways to attract new players to the game and open up new markets.

    Another example of this development is happening in Mumbai India where Reclink India has joined forces with Mumbai Footy to get the game into schools. According to Sumesh Sawant, Co-Founder and National Coordinator from the Reclink India report:

      

     Reclink  India 50k Footy Program:

    “We aim to bring the sport to more than 50k students in next three years. Reclink India 50K footy program provides regular footy activities to local government schools where kids don’t have opportunities to play organized sports. Through AFL 9s we are creating a              healthy, safe and fun environment for kids. Participation in sports is an important aspect that promotes healthy growth and development in children. Our program encourages female involvement and promotes youth empowerment through footy.”

    Last month the program reached a high point with the running of the Reclink India Inter-School Footy Tournament 2018. According to the Reclink India report:

     

    RECLINK INDIA INTER-SCHOOL FOOTY TOURNAMENT 2018

    With the successful launch of the 50k Footy Program for school kids, Reclink India concluded its first ever Inter-School footy tournament on 3 rd February in Mumbai, Maharashtra and on 10th February in Jaipur, Rajasthan. Around 150 kids, including girls, participated in the tournament in each state in three divisions – Senio Senior girls teams during a match at the Chaugan Stadium in Jaipur. 

     All the schools involved in this program are municipal schools where the students don’t have easy access to organized sports activities. Participating in the Inter-School tournament was a brilliant opportunity for the kids to showcase their talents and experience a sports competition in a safe and fun environment. Kids from both the states played with a lot of passion and energy, showing their liking for this new sport.

    Mumbai (3rd February) - 5 schools participated in the Mumbai tournament which was held at the Worli Sports Club Ground, considering ease of conveyance for the kids. Team Tigers, represented by the students of City of Los Angeles Municipal School won the first place in the senior divisions for both boys and girls whereas the Crows, represented by the students of Adarsh Nagar Municipal School, bagged the trophy in the junior mixed category.  

    Jaipur (10th February) – 6 schools played in the inter-school tournament in Rajasthan at a famous sports ground called the Chaugan Stadium. The Saraswati Baal Vidhya Mandir Senior Secondary School playing for the Bombers won the first place in the senior division for boys and girls. Team Kangaroos represented by the Laxmi Shikshan Sansthan School emerged victorious in the junior mixed division.

    Reclink India would like to thank all of their supporters and sponsors namely Reclink Australia, India Unbound, Phillips Foundation, Just Get Active and the West Coast Eagles for their continual help and encouragement and to make this event a grand success.

     

    Whilst the programs re ostensibly for the development of school children across many aspects of their lives, there is also the potential for growth for coaches within the program.

    According to the Reclink India 50K Footy Program Report:

    We at Reclink India, are using the most efficient ways to promote our program; our coaches are the young players who have been involved in footy activities since a couple of years and are now going to schools as instructors. We believe in giving back to the community. Our coaches are mostly students, and through our program each young player gets a chance to be a coach and become a more responsible and disciplined person. 

    Majority of the work done by the staff involves coaching the school kids which takes up around 20hours per week. Along with coaching, the staff also needs to perform administrative tasks like procuring permission from the school’s governing bodies and writing reports about the activities conducted. A coaching guide has been created for the instructors to refer to so that the teachings remain uniform and efficient throughout all locations. 

    This program is enormous in its scope for game development as well as being a genuine part of education options for students in India. Whilst Reclink India and Mumbai Footy operate their programs independently from AFL India, ultimately this is still a story of the game of football growing in Mumbai and elsewhere in an unprecedented manner. The momentum created will go a long way towards the game gaining stronger and wider footholds across the world’s second most populated country.

     

    Image Credits: Reclink India

      ...


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    History has been made in the Colombian capital city of Bogotá with the first match of the inaugural CAFL (Colombian Australian Football League) season being played last weekend.

    The Bogotá Bullants go into the history books as the first team to win a match in the CAFL competition when they downed the DC Aguilas by 38 points. Domiant early, the “Bullants managed to clinch it in the end, warding off a fast-finishing Aguilas.”

    Under the overall umbrella of the Bogotá Bulldogs national team, the league was keen to get people to the big day.

    Their Facebook page read, “The season opener for the CAFL (Colombian Australian Football League) is this Saturday! We're kicking off between the D.C. Aguilas and the Bogota Bullants to find out who gets initial bragging rights in what is looking like will be a cracker of a season. We've had to move the match to the Creativo FC homegrounds so make sure to get there early as kick off is at 2 PM and we want everyone to be there at 1:30 at the latest.”

    Whilst the Santiago Saints have played intra-club matches over many years to keep players involved in the game, and a short-lived competition was attempted in suburban Buenos Aires in Argentina, this CAFL competition marks the biggest foray into a genuine national league competition in South American history.

    And the Bogotá Bullants will live on in history as the first ever winners. The DC Aguilas have already hit the training track for their next match, whilst the Bogotá Bombers are awaiting their first game next rou ...

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  • 03/06/18--18:59: 2018 AFL Canada AGM
  • The followng is an edited version of the AFL Canada 2018 president’s report by Lachlan Griffiths. As this an AGM report it is primarily looking back over the previous year’s events. I hope to interview Lachlan soon, looking forward about a  new strategic plan which will be released shortly and some other details

    The full report can be read here http://websites.sportstg.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=1-7259-0-0-0&sID=154776&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=61461986.

    Two new board positions  were added to the AFL Canada  board for mens and womens player representatives as a voice in national team programming..

    2017 was another successful year for Footy in Canada measured against the three
    focus areas of growth, development and promotion.

    Participation across the country has continued to rise, led by the growth of Women’s footy in Vancouver and Youth programs in Calgary.
    AFL Canada National Teams represented Canada admirably in both London and Melbourne

    AFL Canada were able to grow the exposure of the game through increased engagement via online platforms and a new telecast agreement with CBC. As a result all IC17 Canada games were streamed digitally online through CBCSports.ca.

    As recognition for the work over the past two years the AFL has increased  funding to AFL Canada  allowing the employment of the first full-time staff in Bram Cotton.. Bram’s immediate focus is on assisting AFL Canada  to be recognised by Sport Canada as a National Sporting Organisation.

    Following the 2016 Canadian Nationals and Training Camp, AFL Canada selected  Men’s and Women’s National Development teams who toured London, The Midnight Suns finished with a 2-1 record, beating the London All-stars and the Great Britain Swans and falling narrowly to the Irish Banshees. The North Stars finished with a 1-2 record, being soundly beaten by the Great Britain Bulldogs and the Wandsforth Demons, but bounced back to beat the Welsh National team.

    In August 2017, Canadian National Teams travelled to Melbourne, Australia to compete in the International Cup. Williamstown Football Club were gracious hosts, offering their VFL facilities as a training base for the week prior to the tournament.


    Despite instigating new national trials Canada was unable to leapfrog other improving international teams. The Northwind lost a close opening game against the USA, before bouncing back to defeat the Great Britain Bulldogs. A loss to the strong New Zealand side and Nauru resulted in an 7th overall placing. Burnaby Eagles star Eric Klein was named to the World Team, one of the few very male players not based in Australia to do so.


    The Northern Lights overcame a scare from a tough Fiji in the opening game, escaping with a narrow one point win in a thriller. Wins against  newcomers Pakistan,  a competitive Great Britain and traditional rivals USA saw the Northern Lights fall agonisingly short to Ireland by two points in the Grand Final. Valerie Moreau was named player of the tournament with Lara Hilmi, Aimee Legault, Nicola Kirwan, Hilary Perry and Head Coach Jason Arnold named to the world team.

    At a participation level, AFL Canada  had another year of overall growth, driven primarily by the AFL BC Women and Calgary Men and juniors. AFL BC Men, Edmonton and Ontario Women’s numbers were down in 2017 while Calgary Women, Ontario Men, Quebec and Nova Scotia were relatively flat.


    During 2017 and into early 2018 AFL Canada  has been in touch new and potential new clubs with the Winnipeg Bears, Fort McMurray Magpies, Barrie Ballarats all looking to grow footy in their regions in 2018. AFL Canada are currently re-evaluating how they can better support new and emerging clubs to ensure that they are a catalyst for growth in new regions.


    AFL Canada  were pleased to approve a number of grants in 2017, including; a grant for new goal posts for North Delta Junior AFL, Junior Footys for Edmonton AFC, and three new club grants to help the Vernon Roosters, Vancouver Vixens and Sydney Giants.

     

      ...


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    AFLW's second season is running successfully in Australia and women's footy in South East Asia is following the same trend.

    Recently the Vietnam Swans have proudly announced their own women's team.

    The Swan's girls effort has been great as they have trained hard for two weeks before Tet (Lunar New Year). The new committee member Chia Sabbatucci told the club website:

    “With the first official game of the 2018 season coming up, the girls have been training hard and learning the game. I’ve been really impressed with the interest from the ladies in Saigon especially from girls that have never heard about AFL who want to try it out. With a full squad to hit the paddock for the first game I’m hopeful that it will cement the spirit for the season and give the girls the motivation to continue playing and learn more about our great game – AFL.”

    The women's team have held a mixed modified Aussie Rules AFL tournament in partnership with Saigon Gaelic Women's team for the several seasons, other than regular training sessions. The Swans also organised the positive move of hosting  the first ever women's AFL match  Asian Champs held in Saigon in 2016.

    Vietnam Swans Women's Team are already scheduled to play six matches during the 2018 Season including four international tours.

    10th March – Vietnam vs Cambodia in Saigon

    19th May – Vietnam vs Malaysia in Penang

    Early June – Vietnam vs Cambodia in Phnom Penh

    1st September – Indochina Cup in Phnom Penh

    13th October – Asian Championships in Kuala Lumpur

    3rd November – Central Vietnam Games ...


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    We’re one month into the AFL New Zealand premiership season, and the Central Giants have stayed atop the ladder with two convincing victories in as many weeks. 

    Round 3 Recap
    Round 3 saw the Giants take on the Northern Suns at QBE Stadium in Auckland. The Suns were feeling confident after a strong two weeks of competition, but the Giants kicked the first four goals of the match to gain a 30-point lead heading into halftime. Once again, the two Jameses -- Bowden and McKenzie -- were dangerous in the forward line for the Giants.

    All was not lost for the Suns, however, as they put in a spirited effort throughout the match. Defender Alex Awatere received best on ground honors, and Jackson Clince managed to kick a pair of goals as well. However, the Giants ended up bringing home their third straight victory with a big second half.

     

    “They kicked some late goals in each of the quarters, but we managed to put on a four quarter performance quarter today,” said Giants assistant Wayne Sullivan.

    Final: Giants 13.6.84
    Suns 7.6.48

    Goalkickers (Giants): James Bowden (5), James McKenzie (3), Sam McKenzie (2), Tayne Lockwood (2), Declan Crann
    Goalkickers (Suns): Jackson Clince (2), Ari Cohen (2), Joel Brown, Josh Mackie, Heta Scarf-Matthews
    Best on Ground (Giants): Nick Rhodes
    Best on Ground (Suns): Alexa Awatere

    In the second game, the Western Crows continued to show themselves as potential premiership contenders in 2018, smashing the Southern Saints by 79 points. Star midfielders Jay Johnson and Shane Leat used their speed and ball skills to dominate the clearances and disposals for the Crows. Te Kopa Tipene-Thomas booted three goals, as did Zac Maio. Johnson, the Crows’ captain, kicked two of his own.

    While the Saints were hampered by injuries heading into the game, they simply didn’t have enough answers against the high-powered Crows side. Key defender/captain Michael Boyce (two goals) had to move into the midfield due to the injury-related absences of Carlos Donnell-Brown and Andriu Sucu. Ryan Marsland had three of the Saints’ five goals, and young defender Hayden Johnston was named best on ground for the Saints in the match. Coaches seem excited about his future with the club.

    Final: Crows 16.6.112
    Saints 5.3.33

    Goalkickers (Crows): Zac Maio (3), Te Kopa Tipene-Thomas (3), Brad Wade (2), Jay Johnson (2), Joey Alesich-Tamariki, Jed Williams, Steph Tabaillou, Lewis Gill, Alastair Maisey, David Rattenbury
    Goalkickers (Saints): Ryan Marsland (3), Michael Boyce (2)
    Best on ground (Crows): Joey Alesich-Tamariki
    Best on ground (Saints): Hayden Johnston


    Round 4 Recap
    The Crows were back at again in Round 4, securing another solid win to put on their resume despite blustery conditions at QBE Stadium. Josh Mackie and Ari Cohen kicked the first two goals for the Suns in a hard-fought first quarter, but the Crows were able to bounce back, aided by some strong pace courtesy of Shane Leat. It was a similarly back-and-forth affair for both sides in the second quarter, but Crows coach Andrew Crighton was ready and confident.

    “We knew that if we could ride out the first couple of quarters, then we could look to put the foot down in the second half, which is exactly what we did,” Crighton explained in his post-match interview.

    Crighton also showed a willingness to take advantage of mismatches, switching natural defender Alastair Maisey to the forward line, while moving Steph Tabaillou to the halfback line. This strategy, combined with a constant attacking effort around the footy, helped propel the Crows to a 32-point win.

    Final: Crows 10.13.73
    Suns 6.5.41
     
    Goalkickers (Crows): Zac Maio (2), Brad Wade (2), Alastair Maisey (2), Joey Alesich-Tamariki (2), Ryan White, Luke Dunning
    Goalkickers (Suns): Ari Cohen, Josh Mackie, Mitch Ryan, Peter Van Kampen, Tim Stokes, Josh Sedgwick
    Best on ground (Crows): Shane Leat
    Best on ground (Suns): Joel Brown


    Meanwhile, in the second game, the Giants stayed perfect at 4-0 with another resounding victory, this time over the Saints. Once again, Josh Bowden was one of the best players for the Giants, kicking three goals.

    However, the newly-healthy Saints gave the Giants all they could take early in the first half. The Giants held a double-digit lead after the halftime siren sounded, but the Saints still couldn’t take advantage of their scoring opportunities. Nick Rhodes and Harry Manks were superb in defense for the Giants, but Xavier Rice was equally effective in that area for the Saints, holding Giant gun James McKenzie to only one goal for the match.

    The Giants came alive in the second half and cruised to a 49-point win, but the Saints should feel good about their chances in the second month of the season and beyond if they stay healthy. They have a nice nucleus of young talent that will serve them well in the near future.

    Final: Giants 9.16.70
    Saints 2.9.21
     
    Goalkickers (Giants): James Bowden (3), Josh Cunliffe (3), James McKenzie, Sam McKenzie, Blake Nahu
    Goalkickers (Saints): Misilifi Faimalo (2)
    Best on ground (Giants): Josh Cunliffe
    Best on ground (Saints): Tevita Taginavulau


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    The tremendous work of AFL India may be about to bring the sweetest fruit of all as the AFL considers options to take advantage of the tremendous football platform laid over recent years. The dedication of AFL India, and the uptake of the game across India, may be the “Perfect Storm” needed for the game to really take hold in a big way. 

    Nick Bowen from the www.afl.com.au website reports that the AFL are about to engage in further missions to explore the growth possibilities of the game in India, with matches at the highest level being slated again. This is on the back of recent stories from India which have looked at the growth of a local Mumbai-based competition (see Mumbai Footy Cup 2018), and a schools-based footy program in Mumbai (see School Kids Get Footy Lesson In India). Whilst these programs are outside of the AFL India umbrella, they also suggest that Mumbai is developing as the logical city to host an AFL match.

     FOUR clubs are visiting India this week as the AFL edges closer to staging a game in the world's second most populous country.

    AFL general manager of China and India David Stevenson will fly to India later this week on a fact-finding mission, and will be accompanied by officials from four clubs.  

    League CEO Gillon McLachlan preferred not to disclose the identity of those clubs at a pre-season briefing with reporters on Wednesday. 

    But Richmond and Greater Western Sydney have been pushing since last year to play a premiership game in Mumbai, while Essendon and Adelaide have also been investigating playing a pre-season or exhibition game on the subcontinent.    

    McLachlan said India was an enticing new market for the AFL, but was not sure how soon games could be fixtured there. 

    "China and India are huge migrant markets. India has facilities that are easy, so you've got population and the scale, you've got the economic growth and an appetite to follow sport," McLachlan said.  

    "There are potentially opportunities in India and they're being explored at the moment." 

    To read the rest of this article, including Gillon McLachlan’s additional comments about gam development in China, the original story can be found at: http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-03-07/four-clubs-off-to-india-as-afl-eyes-staging-game ...


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