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Independent News and Views from the International Aussie Rules Community

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    Round 18 kicks off in Melbourne on Friday night with Collingwood hosting North Melbourne at Docklands Stadium. 

    If you want to know when you can see the footy on TV in your part of the world, check out the full schedule below.

    As always schedules are subject to change at the discretion of the local broadcaster so please check local guides for updates.  Note the scheduled time for the GC Suns vs Fremantle into China is yet to be confirmed.

    1 22-Jul Night Collingwood vs. N Melbourne Etihad Stadium VIC 19:50 19:50 09:50 SEVEN
    2 23-Jul Day Sydney Swans vs. Carlton SCG SA 13:45 13:45 03:45 SEVEN
    3 23-Jul Day GC SUNS vs. Fremantle Metricon Stadium QLD 14:10 14:10 04:10 FOX
    4 23-Jul Twilight WC Eagles vs. Melbourne Domain Stadium WA 14:35 16:35 06:35 FOX
    5 23-Jul Night Geelong vs. Adelaide Simonds Stadium VIC 19:25 19:25 09:25 SEVEN
    6 23-Jul Night Western Bulldogs vs. St Kilda Etihad Stadium VIC 19:25 19:25 09:25 FOX
    7 24-Jul Early Essendon vs. Brisbane Lions Etihad Stadium VIC 13:10 13:10 03:10 FOX
    8 24-Jul Day Hawthorn vs. Richmond MCG VIC 15:20 15:20 05:20 SEVEN
    9 24-Jul Twilight Port Adelaide vs. GWS Adelaide Oval SA 16:10 16:40 06:40 FOX
    AUSTRALIA PLUS                    
    Asia 22/7 @ 17:30 HKT (Live) 23/7 @ 11:30 HKT (Live) - 23/7 @ 14:30 HKT (Live) 23/7 @ 17:25 HKT (Live) - 24/7 @ 11:00 HKT (Live) - 24/7 @ 14:30 HKT (Live) 27/7 @ 11:00 HKT
    Pacific 22/7 @ 21:30 Fiji (Live) 23/7 @ 15:30 Fiji (Live) - 23/7 @ 18:30 Fiji (Live) 23/7 @ 21:25 Fiji (Live) - 24/7 @ 15:00 Fiji (Live) - 24/7 @ 18:30 Fiji (Live) 27/7 @ 15:00 Fiji
    India 22/7 @ 15:00 IND (Live) 23/7 @ 09:00 IND (Live) - 23/7 @ 12:00 IND (Live) 23/7 @ 14:55 IND (Live) - 24/7 @ 08:30 IND (Live) - 24/7 @ 12:00 IND (Live) 27/7 @ 08:30 IND
    China - - TBC - - - - - - -
    CLARO SPORTS                    
    Latin America 23/7 @ 08:30 CTU (Delay) - - - - - - - - -
    ESPN - BT SPORT                    
    UK & Ireland 22/7 @ 10:30 BST (Live) - 23/7 @ 05:00 BST (Live) 23/7 @ 07:30 BST (Live) 23/7 @ 10:00 BST (Live) - - 24/7 @ 06:00 BST (Live) - 26/7 @ 19:00 BST
    Caribbean - - - - 23/7 @ 05:00 ET (Live) - - - - 28/7 @ 24:00 ET
    FOX SPORTS 1                    
    USA - - - - 23/7 @ 05:00 ET (Live) - - - - -
    FOX SPORTS 2                    
    USA 22/7 @ 05:30 ET (Live) - - - - - - - - -
    FOX SOCCER PLUS                    
    USA - 22/7 @ 23:30 ET (Live) - 23/7 @ 02:30 ET (Live) - - - 24/7 @ 01:00 ET (Live) - 26/7 @ 01:00 ET
    ORBIT SHOWTIME NETWORK                    
    Middle East 22/7 @ 13:30 GST (Live) - - - 23/7 @ 13:00 GST (Live) 23/7 @ 13:00 GST (Live) - 24/7 @ 09:00 GST (Live) - 26/7 @ 18:00 GST
    GEE - Boats & Cruises                    
    Worldwide (excl. Aust.) 22/7 @ 09:30 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 03:30 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 04:00 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 06:30 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 09:00 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 09:00 GMT (Live) 24/7 @ 03:00 GMT (Live) 24/7 @ 05:00 GMT (Live) 24/7 @ 06:30 GMT (Live) -
    SKY SPORTS                    
    New Zealand - - - - - - - 25/7 @ 24:00 NZT (Delay) - -
    Canada 23/7 @ 09:00 ET (Delay) - - - 23/7 @ 05:00 ET (Live) - - - - -
    New Zealand 22/7 @ 21:30 NZT (Live) - 23/7 @ 16:00 NZT (Live) - - 23/7 @ 22:00 NZT (Delay) 24/7 @ 15:00 NZT (Live) - 24/7 @ 22:40 NZT (Delay) 27/7 @ 18:00 NZT
    Worldwide (excl. Aust) 22/7 @ 09:50 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 03:45 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 04:10 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 06:35 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 09:25 GMT (Live) 23/7 @ 09:25 GMT (Live) 24/7 @ 03:10 GMT (Live) 24/7 @ 05:20 GMT (Live) 24/7 @ 06:40 GMT (Live) -

    *We also recommend you check out the AFANA website if you are in North America as they tend to have the very latest information on broadcast schedules or changes. ...

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    The Manchester Mozzies will go head to head with the Nottingham Scorpions for the 2016 AFLCNE Grand Final after last weekend’s semi-finals were completed.

    The Mozzies put down any revolt from the Huddersfield Rams with a commanding 85 point victory in an excellent tone up prior to the big game. Against good opposition, the Mozzies powered through the match challenging themselves to meet challenges and build strength.

    The Nottingham Scorpions were also strong in downing the well performed Wolverhampton Wolverines in the other semi-final by 39 points. Both teams had enjoyed success throughout the year, but the Scorpions were too strong on the day.

    For the Scorpions the opportunity now exists to add to their premiership trophy cabinet after winning the title in 20005 and 2011. Certainly, the Scorpions have their eyes on the biggest prize. Runners up again would not be in their equation.

    For the Mozzies, however, it will be their chance at a three-peat success, taking the title in both 2014 and 2015. It would extend a remarkable spell whereby, if successful, the Mozzies would have five flags from six Grand Finals over seven years. They have been the dominant club in the AFLCNE for a long time now and have no immediate plans to relinquish that claim.

    The match will be played at the Manchester Mozzies home ground, the Burnage Rugby Club. The Grand Final kicks off at 2pm, preceded by the Plate Final at midday.

    The Plate final will be played between the Sheffield Thunder and the Tyne Tees Tigers. The Tigers dispatched the Merseyside Saints in their semi-final by 30 points to advance. For the Saints, whilst disappointed at not pulling off an upset victory to extend their season, they can be very proud of their efforts this season. Earlier in the season they went down to the Tigers by a huge 115 points, so to turn things around and narrow the gap to just 30 points in a match with much more riding on it shows just how far the Saints have travelled in their inaugural season.

    AFLCNE Grand Final – Manchester Mozzies v Nottingham Scorpions
    AFLCNE Plate Final – Sheffield Thunder v Tyne Tees Tigers

    Semi-Final Results:
    Manchester Mozzies 144 d Huddersfield Rams 59
    Nottingham Scorpions 93 d Wolverhampton Wolverines 54
    Tyne Tees Tigers 13 25 103 d Merseyside Saints 9 19 73

    Good luck to all teams on the weekend as they bring the 2016 AFLCNE season to a memorable close ...

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    5pm update - Kurt is now named as Emergency for Sundays game and not in the selected 22.

    Hawthorn has included midfielder Will Langford, key forward Tim O’Brien and Kiwi defender Kurt Heatherley in an extended squad to face Richmond on Sunday.

    All three have been named on the bench in the Hawks’ 25-man squad.

    Heatherley continued his push for a senior debut last week racking up 17 disposals, eight marks and five rebound 50s for Box Hill.
    Hawthorn will finalise its side tomorrow afternoon ahead of Sunday’s clash at the MCG, which will be Sam Mitchell’s 300th AFL game.

    If he makes the final 22 for Sunday’s game he will be the first player to learn the game as a junior outside Australia and come through the development pathway to play in the AFL. A number of others from PNG have made it to AFL clubs as International Scholarship players and Gideon Simon was an International Rookie at Richmond but Heatherley would be the first to debut in the AFL.

    He will also be the first born and bred New Zealander (and South Pacific representative) to achieve this feat.

    Heatherley has put together two and a half solid seasons in the VFL as a defender and more recently as a key defender. The 193cm backman was elevated to the club’s senior list in 2015 after being selected as an International Rookie in 2013. He finished third in Box Hill's best and fairest last year.

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    Mynmar Nationals Star in AFL Asia Debut  - Article from Myanmar Timesby RG Vogt

    After stepping to his mark and smashing a kick through the uprights, Han Tun Aung kept his cool.

    The rest of the team erupted into triumphant shouts.

    Euphoria was to be expected, as the historic goal marks the first ever kicked by a Myanmar national in AFL Asia competition. It was a weekend of firsts for Han Tun Aung and his compatriot Min Thiha Kaung, both playing footy for the Fighting Cocks for the first time.

    Kane Prosser, a member of the club, said Han Tun Aung approached the team during outdoor training about a month ago. The young footballer – who says he traditionally plays striker – was curious about the Australian-rules football that the previously-all-foreigners club was playing. They invited him to join in, and he began attending training sessions regularly.

    Soon he had been joined by Min Thiha Kaung, and Ye Min Thu, forming a trio of Myanmar AFL players for the first time in the club’s history.

    Local development has long been a core goal of the Myanmar Fighting Cocks, which came into existence in 2012. Many similar clubs, such as the Jakarta Bintangs and the Cambodia Eagles, sponsor local players to travel to tournaments such as the Asia Champs, and the Cocks secured a sport diplomacy grant from the Australian Embassy to support their local players on their recent trip to Cambodia.

    When the team discussed travelling with the new recruits, Han Tun Aung and Min Thiha Kaung expressed interest. Prosser and club president Henry Cox helped Han Tun Aung apply for and obtain his Myanmar passport, covering the expenses and booking his flight with the team to Phnom Penh. It was his first time on an airplane.

    “I’m not nervous,” he said on July 14, just a day before taking off. “I’m excited [to play].”

    Min Thiha Kaung had flown before, but it was his first trip to Cambodia. The two new Cocks enjoyed a day of exploring the city before resting up ahead of the big game.

    Though smaller than many of their opponents, Min Thiha Kaung and Han Tun Aung made up for what they lack in body mass with blistering speed. And in the fourth quarter, after Han Tun Aung had pulled away from his defender and marked a kick, he demonstrated the superior kicking ability that has made him a strong footballer.

    After the game, team captain Andrew Romanin described the team’s response to the goal.

    “We basically came running from everywhere and surrounded him,” he said, laughing. “Han was pretty calm.”

    Romanin added that he thinks Han Tun Aung and Min Thiha Kaung will return to Myanmar with good
    experiences to share. The new recruits will ideally begin to recruit others, attracting more Myanmar youth to the game and improving local development.

    “Hopefully this gives us a bit of momentum with our goal of getting locals engaged with the game and the club,” he said. “We expect they will come back to Myanmar and talk about it with some of their friends and stuff and bring other guys along. Hopefully it just creates a bit of interest for them.”

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    Stanis Heili and Brandon Nazione have been selected to trial with a number of AFL clubs over the next week. The two athletes performed well at the AFL's US Combine held in Los Angeles in April this year.

    They have already met with Mason Cox to personally discuss what may lie ahead for them and attended the St Kilda vs Melbourne game at Etihad on the weekend.

    Omari Gudul should also be in Australia with Heili and Nazione trialling but it is believed he is having visa problems preventing his entry to the country.

    In the week ahead they will attend more AFL matches and trial at a number of clubs interested in converting these tall talented athletes to Australian rules.

    Clubs can sign these players to either International Rookie (Category B) or International scholarship list without having to wait in line for them at the draft. ...

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    When writing history, one train of thought says that clubs go through the stages of initial development, success, domination and then legends. It might be the time to have a close look at the Manchester Mosquitoes and review their place on that particular pecking order.

    The Manchester Mozzies have claimed the 2016 AFLCNE premiership with an emphatic 83 point victory against the Nottingham Scorpions in the Grand Final. For the Mozzies it is a rare “three-peat” of flags, claiming the titles in 2014, 2015 and now 2016. More impressive is the fact that they have now won five flags in seven years from their six Grand Final appearances.

    As they did last year, the Mozzies raced out of the blocks with a big first quarter. Not as frightening as 2015 when their 12 goal to one first term effectively buried the Sheffield Thunder by quarter time, but their eight goal term set up a six goal quarter time lead. The Scorpions were already heavily on the back foot.

    Down by 55 points by half time, the Scorpions knew that all hinged on a big third quarter to reduce the gap and give themselves a chance to storm home in the last quarter. However, the Mozzies had other ideas hammering on 13 scoring shots to two for the term and opening up a massive 86 point lead.

    The final quarter was for pride and the Scorpions won the quarter, but by then the damage had been done. By the final siren the Mozzies had triumphed again and the celebrations began for a team that went through the season undefeated – an impressive feat in its own right.

    Quarter Time: Mozzies 8 4 52 v Scorpions 2 3 15
    Half Time: Mozzies 15 5 95 v Scorpions 6 4 40
    Three Quarter Time: Mozzies 20 13 133 v Scorpions 7 5 47
    Final: Manchester Mozzies 23 18 156 defeated Nottingham Scorpions 11 7 73

    The battle for the newly minted Premiership Plate was played as the curtain-raiser to the main event. Fifth placed Sheffield Thunder took on sixth placed Tyne Tees Tigers. Their ladder positions wouldn’t change but the prestige of another piece of silverware was incentive. The Thunder worked hard to lead at half time, up by 16 points, and they also won the final quarter narrowly.

    But a withering third quarter by the Tigers with five unanswered goals was enough for them to take the lead by three quarter time and withstand a strong challenge from the Thunder in the tense last quarter to claim the plate.

    It completed another good finish to a season for the Tigers. They finished 2015 on a roll also, and to win the plate this year says much about their improvement and paints a rosier picture for the future.

    Final Score: Tyne Tees Tigers 14 15 99 d Sheffield Thunder 12 18 90

    So, now all clubs look towards their respective off-seasons with a host of tournaments, both regional and international, to compete in and develop lists in readiness for 2017 when it all starts again.

    The top four this season can work towards re-establishing the form which got them there in 2016, however those teams outside the four can look towards a promising new year. The Tyne Tees Tigers have a plate to crow about, the Merseyside Saints managed a win in their first season and will only improve and Sheffield Thunder can build on their four wins this season. It is also possible that the Birmingham Bears return to battle next season.

    But for the time being it is a hearty congratulations to the Manchester Mozzies on their 2016 premiership and the new pages they have written in the AFLCNE history books.

    (Picture: Elise Cox - Manchester Mozzie ...

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    Matt Thompson from the website reports on life after the AFL for one of the recent American recruits to the AFL. The story certainly gives a small idea of how one player gave our game a shot and when things didn’t fully pan out, another career awaited.

    FORMER North Melbourne international rookie Eric Wallace has signed on with American NFL side Carolina Panthers.

    The North Carolina local spent three years on the Kangaroos list, but failed to play a senior game.

    Wallace – nicknamed 'The Beast' – has earned a spot on the Panthers 90-man roster in the position of tight end.


    "I grew up a Carolina fan," the 27-year-old told the Panthers website. "Today, the dream came true." 

    "Coming back, the decision was whether I'd play basketball again or continue along the football path and put pads on again," Wallace said. 

    "It's surreal," he said.

    "I have size – you can't really teach size – and speed. I'm faster than I look. I'm a smooth athlete, pretty good with my hands." 

    Wallace revealed his decision to originally try out at the AFL US Combine was the offer of free flights. 

    "I was like, ‘It's a free trip to L.A. Why notω' " Wallace said. 

    "Out of about 35 of us, three of us got invited to the real combine in Melbourne, Australia. Out of those three, North Melbourne signed me."

    In the interview with his new club's website, Wallace also explained his role as a ruckman in Australian football. 

    "The big guy who enforces things, kind of like a basketball centre," he said. 

    "It's a very physical sport, with no pads. It's fast-paced, non-stop like basketball. Guys are clearing half-marathon numbers during a game. It's also highly skilled. Everybody has to be able to kick, run, catch. 

    "It's a different physicality. The AFL is more free flow where you've got a man and you guard him. The NFL, it's more head-to-head, trying to stop a 270-pound man running at you."

    Carolina reached the Super Bowl earlier this year, losing to the Denver Broncos.

    Original story at: ...

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    Round 19 kicks off in Melbourne on Friday night with Geelong hosting the Western Bulldogs at Simonds Stadium. 

    If you want to know when you can see the footy on TV in your part of the world, check out the full schedule below.

    As always schedules are subject to change at the discretion of the local broadcaster so please check local guides for updates. 

    1 29-Jul Night Geelong vs. Western Bulldogs Simonds Stadium VIC 19:50 09:50 SEVEN
    2 30-Jul Day GWS GIANTS vs. Richmond Manuka Oval ACT 13:45 03:45 SEVEN
    3 30-Jul Day Hawthorn vs. Carlton Aurora Stadium TAS 14:10 04:10 FOX
    4 30-Jul Twilight Collingwood vs. WC Eagles MCG VIC 16:35 06:35 FOX
    5 30-Jul Night North Melbourne vs. St Kilda Etihad Stadium VIC 19:25 09:25 SEVEN
    6 30-Jul Night Brisbane Lions vs. Port Adelaide The Gabba QLD 19:25 09:25 FOX
    7 31-Jul Early Melbourne vs. Gold Coast SUNS MCG VIC 13:10 03:10 FOX
    8 31-Jul Day Fremantle vs. Sydney Swans Domain Stadium WA 13:20 05:20 SEVEN
    9 31-Jul Twilight Adelaide Crows vs. Essendon Adelaide Oval SA 16:10 06:40 FOX


    AUSTRALIA PLUS                    
    Asia 29/7 @ 17:30 HKT (Live) 30/7 @ 11:30 HKT (Live) - 30/7 @ 14:30 HKT (Live) 30/7 @ 17:25 HKT (Live) - 31/7 @ 11:00 HKT (Live) - 31/7 @ 14:30 HKT (Live) 3/8 @ 11:00 HKT
    Pacific 29/7 @ 21:30 Fiji (Live) 30/7 @ 15:30 Fiji (Live) - 30/7 @ 18:30 Fiji (Live) 30/7 @ 21:25 Fiji (Live) - 31/7 @ 15:00 Fiji (Live) - 31/7 @ 18:30 Fiji (Live) 3/8 @ 15:00 Fiji
    India 29/7 @ 15:00 IND (Live) 30/7 @ 09:00 IND (Live) - 30/7 @ 12:00 IND (Live) 30/7 @ 14:55 IND (Live) - 31/7 @ 08:30 IND (Live) - 31/7 @ 12:00 IND (Live) 3/8 @ 08:30 IND
    China TBC - - - - - - - - -
    CLARO SPORTS                    
    Latin America 30/7 @ 08:30 CTU (Delay) - - - - - - - - -
    ESPN - BT SPORT                    
    UK & Ireland 29/7 @ 10:30 BST (Live) - 30/7 @ 05:00 BST (Live) 30/7 @ 07:30 BST (Live) 30/7 @ 10:00 BST (Live) - - 31/7 @ 06:00 BST (Live) - 2/8 @ 19:00 BST
    Caribbean - - - - 30/7 @ 05:00 ET (LIVE) - - - - 2/8 @ 17:00 ET
    FOX SPORTS 1                    
    USA - - - - 30/7 @ 05:00 ET (Live) - - - - -
    FOX SPORTS 2                    
    USA - - - - - - - 31/7 @ 01:00 ET (Live) - -
    FOX SOCCER PLUS                    
    USA 29/7 @ 05:30 ET (Live) 29/7 @ 23:30 ET (Live) - 30/7 @ 02:30 ET (Live) - - - - - 1/8 @ 23:00 ET
    ORBIT SHOWTIME NETWORK                    
    Middle East 29/7 @ 13:30 GST (Live) 30/7 @ 07:30 GST (Live) - - - - 31/7 @ 07:00 GST (Live) - - 2/8 @ 18:00 GST
    GEE - Boats & Cruises                    
    Worldwide (excl. Aust.) 29/7 @ 09:30 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 03:30 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 04:00 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 06:30 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 09:00 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 09:00 GMT (Live) 31/7 @ 03:00 GMT (Live) 31/7 @ 05:00 GMT (Live) 31/7 @ 06:30 GMT (Live) -
    SKY SPORTS                    
    New Zealand - - - - - - - 1/8 @ 24:00 NZT (Delay) - -
    Canada 31/7 @ 14:00 ET (Delay) - 29/7 @ 24:00 ET (Live) - - - - - - -
    New Zealand 29/7 @ 21:30 NZT (Live) - 30/7 @ 16:00 NZT (Live) - 30/7 @ 22:00 NZT (Delay) - 31/7 @ 15:00 NZT (Live) - 31/7 @ 22:35 NZT (Delay) 3/8 @ 18:00 NZT
    Worldwide (excl. Aust) 29/7 @ 09:50 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 03:45 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 04:10 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 06:35 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 09:25 GMT (Live) 30/7 @ 09:25 GMT (Live) 31/7 @ 03:10 GMT (Live) 31/7 @ 05:20 GMT (Live) 31/7 @ 06:40 GMT (Live) -

    *We also recommend you check out the AFANA website if you are in North America as they tend to have the very latest information on broadcast schedules or changes. ...

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    The AFL national women’s league clubs today named their marquee players at press conferences in Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

    The 16 players will be the faces of the inaugural women’s teams; Adelaide Crows, Brisbane Lions, Carlton, Collingwood, Fremantle, GWS Giants, Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs.

    Among them is 20 year old Sabrina Fredrick-Traub who currently plays full forward for South Fremantle.  Fredrick-Traub was born in England and moved to Australia when she was seven and she began playing football with the boys to help get used to Australian life.  She was named as one of two marquee players for the Brisbane Lions

    Left: Sabrina Fredrick-Traub Image courtesy AFL Media

    AFL chief executive officer Gillon McLachlan said the players will become heroes of their clubs.

    “These women are the first ever female players to be listed at AFL clubs and their future as elite football players starts today. They will carry the hopes of their clubs, of our league, and we hope their own legion of fans,” he said.

    “We’ve seen them play and they are without doubt the best players our game has to offer. And importantly, off the field they demonstrate passion, determination and a hunger to inspire and encourage young Australian girls who love our game that anything is possible.”

    The strength of women’s football in Western Australia is reflected in their eight marquee players. Victoria has seven players while Tayla Harris is the only Queenslander.

    Six West Australians will relocate to other cities to play in the national competition.

    The Darebin Falcons (VFL Womens) has four players while the Coastal Titans (WAWFL) has three players.

    Marquee Player Profiles

    Adelaide Crows

    Kellie Gibson

    Age: 20


    In 2016 made the move to SA club Morphettville Park

    Originally from Swan Districts WA

    5 x WA youth girls representative

    2 x WAWFL premiership player

    Played Rugby 7s and went to the Youth Olympics in 2014 and won a gold medal

    Selection #48 in 2013 Draft

    Played with Western Bulldogs 2013, 2015

    Played with Melbourne 2014

    SANFL Community Programs Coordinator 


    Chelsea Randall

    Age: 25


    Plays with Swan Districts in WAWFL

    3 x All-Australian

    2 x WAWFL Best and Fairest

    Selection #3 in 2013 Draft

    Played with Melbourne 2013, 2014 & 2015

    Represented Western Australia 2015 & 2016

    Swan Districts Regional Manager - East Pilbara


    Brisbane Lions

    Sabrina Frederick-Traub
    Age: 20

    Full forward

    Plays with South Fremantle in WAWFL

    2 x youth girls All Australian

    Played with Melbourne 2015

    Played Western Australia 2015, 2016

    2016 Australia Post AFL Multicultural Ambassador

    Kicked three goals in the 2015 AFL Women's Exhibition Match

    Currently studying sports psychology at Murdoch University

    Moved to Australia, from England, when she was seven and she began playing football with the boys to help get used to Australian life.


    Tayla Harris

    Age: 19


    Plays with Zillmere in QWFL

    5 x youth girls All-Australian

    Selection #17 in 2014 Draft

    Played with Melbourne 2014, 2015

    Played with Brisbane Lions academy team 2016

    Brisbane Lions Community Officer




    Brianna Davey

    Age: 21


    Played with the Western Bulldogs 2015 & 2016

    Playing with the St Kilda Sharks

    Played for Melbourne Victory 2010–2015 in W League

    Played for Melbourne City 2016 in W League

    Former goalkeeper for the Matildas

    Played Australian football until 13 years

    Currently studying to be a teacher


    Darcy Vescio
    Age: 23
    Full forward

    Plays with Darebin Falcons

    Selection #3 2014 Draft
    Played for Western Bulldogs 2014 and 2015
    Victorian state team 2013 & 2015

    3 x premiership player with the Darebin Falcons
    2016 Australia Post AFL Multicultural Ambassador
    Comes from a Chinese and Italian background
    Starting playing footy at age five

    Graphic designer




    Moana Hope
    Age: 28
    Full forward

    Plays with St Kilda Sharks

    Selection #10 in 2014 Draft
    Played for Western Bulldogs 2014 and 2015

    Has won multiple League goal kicking awards
    5 x Victorian State representative

    200+ games in the VWFL
    Starting playing footy at age 13 with the boys

    Traffic operations manager


    Emma King
    Age: 22

    Plays with Coastal Titans in WAWFL
    Selection #1 in 2014 Draft

    Played with Western Bulldogs 2014, 2015

    2 x WA State representative

    2 x WAWFL player

    Has a twin sister, one of two sets in the family

    Has just completed her architecture degree




    Kiara Bowers

    Age: 24

    Plays with Coastal Titans
    Selection #19 in 2013 Draft

    Played with Melbourne in 2013, 2014, 2015

    5 x WA State representative

    4 x WAWFL League Best & Fairest

    3 x WAWFL player

    Area Manager for Hendry


    Kara Donnellan

    Age: 24

    Captains Swan Districts in WAWFL
    Selection #5 in 2013 Draft

    Played with Melbourne 2013, 2014, 2015

    3 x WA State representative

    3 x Vic State representative

    3 x All-Australian

    2 x Club B&F at Swan Districts

    Originally from Victoria

    Justice and High Performance Manager at Swan Districts


    GWS Giants


    Renee Forth

    Age: 29


    Captains Coastal Titans in WAWFL

    2012 Club Best and Fairest

    Selection #41 in 2013 Draft

    4 x WA Representative

    Played with Melbourne 2013, 2014

    Played with Western Bulldogs in 2015



    Emma Swanson

    Age: 21


    Selection #29 in 2013 Draft

    Plays with East Fremantle in WAWFL

    4 x Club Best and Fairest

    Played with Melbourne 2013, 2014, 2015

    4 x WA Representative at seniors and youth girls’ level

    Youth Girls All Australian

    AFL Game Development Officer




    Mel Hickey

    Age: 31


    Selection #11 in 2013 Draft

    3 x Victorian player

    4 x premiership player with the Darebin Falcons

    2 x All-Australian

    Grew up in Mildura, a distant relation to Geelong great Reg Hickey

    Fitness consultant


    Daisy Pearce

    Age: 28


    Melbourne captain 2013, 2014, 2015

    Selection #1 in 2013 Draft

    Captains the Darebin Falcons

    8 x premiership player

    4 x Victorian player

    4 x All-Australian

    6 x VWFL Premier Division B&F – Helen Lambert Medal

    Previously a midwife and now an intern with Melbourne FC


    Western Bulldogs


    Ellie Blackburn

    Age: 21


    Plays with Melbourne Uni

    Selection #13 in 2013 Draft

    2 x Victorian Representative

    Played with Melbourne 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016

    All-Australian at both senior and youth girls’ level

    50+ senior games in the VWFL

    Grew up barracking for Hawthorn

    Store manager


    Katie Brennan

    Age: 23


    Originally from QLD now living in Victoria playing with the Darebin Falcons

    Selection #22 in 2013 Draft

    Victorian State Representative on 2 occasions

    QLD State Representative at both senior and youth girls’ level

    3 x premiership player with the Darebin Falcons

    3 x All-Australian

    Strength and conditioning coach

    Craig Starcevichtoday announced the signings of our two women's marquee players.


    — Brisbane Lions (@brisbanelions) July 27, 2016 ...

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    Some of the greatest names in AFL/VFL and state football have made their way to the game from the Northern Territory. Not usually a location celebrated in the same tones as Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia or even Tasmania, the Territory has given us icons, legends and just some very good footballers.

    Try this: Maurice Rioli (Richmond), Cyril Rioli (Hawthorn), Michael Long (Essendon), Nathan Buckley (Collingwood), Andrew Mcleod (Adelaide), Peter Burgoyne (Port Adelaide), Joel Bowden (Richmond) and so many more greats hail from the Northern Territory.

    A brief look at the newest draftees, trades and rookies last year also boasts names like Jed Anderson (North Melbourne), Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti (Essendon) and Daniel Rioli (Richmond) who came to the game from the NT. 


    The following press release from the AFLNT details the upcoming celebration of Northern Territorian footy talent wth the announcement of the Top 40 which will soon be reduced further to the greatest 22 Territorian players.


    Following months of robust discussion and committee debate, AFLNT this morning unveiled the Top 40 footballers for the Northern Territory Government AFLNT Team of the Century at the historic Gardens Oval.

    The list includes NT football identities that established their careers on the national stage and also pays respect to the local men who made their name in the Territory.

    Featuring in the Top 40 and present at the announcement this morning is Michael Long, winner of two AFL Premierships with the Essendon Football Club, a Norm Smith medallist and Australian Football Hall of Fame inductee.

    Dual-Nichols medallist Jarred Ilett and AFLNT Hall of Fame members, Russell Jeffrey and Bennie LewFatt, joined Long at the announcement.

    The Top 40 includes three members of the Rioli family, two familiar LewFatt names, and Ilett brothers Jarred and Cameron.

    All Australian representatives Andrew McLeod, Michael McLean, Cadji Dunn, and Central Australian Joel Bowden also feature.

    Bowden is not the only Central Australian who made the list; Henry Peckham, who is often considered to be one of Central Australia’s finest footballers, joins him.

    AFLNT board member and Team of the Century Selection Committee member, Shaun Hardy, said it was no-easy task getting to a top 40.

    “We would like to congratulate each member of the top 40 on such an achievement. Everyone selected has made an impact on our game, not only in the Territory, but also all around the country,” Mr Hardy said.

    An earlier announcement in April saw selectors identify the top 100 players from the past 100 years, following months of discussion.

    “We initially thought the process of getting to a top 100 was difficult, you can imagine the debate around the table as we reduced the list to 40,” Mr Hardy said.

    “The Committee feels those selected truly represent the best-of-the-best, and with the support of the NT Government, we are able to celebrate with Territory football fans a once-in-a-century occasion.

    Minister for Sport and Recreation Gary Higgins MLA said:

    “I commend the Northern Territory Government AFLNT Team of the Century Selection Committee on undertaking such an arduous task,” Mr Higgins said.

    “AFL plays such a huge role in the lives of Territorians and this team will be a real testament to the long list of champion Northern Territory footballers throughout the years.

    “The Northern Territory has produced some of the best footballers to have ever played the game and I look forward to seeing the final team when it is announced in September,” Mr Higgins said.

    Five men are vying for the Coach of the Century, including John Taylor, Aldo Rossetto, Richard Taylor, Mark Motlop and George Liveris.

    The Team of the Century Selection Committee comprises Shaun Hardy, Lincoln Jenkin, Charlie King, Bennie (Walter) LewFatt, Grey Morris and Jenny Sinclair.

    A gala dinner will be held on Friday 2nd September, when a 22-man team and coach is named as the inaugural Northern Territory Government AFLNT Team of the Century.


    The Top 40:


    Jimmy Anderson (1954 – 1971)

    Michael Athanasiou (1979 – 2000)

    Joe Bonson (1953 – 1970)

    Joel Bowden (1993 – 2009)

    William 'Ninny' Briston (1979 – 1991)

    Nathan Buckley (1990 – 2007)

    Peter Burgoyne (1994 – 2010)

    Ted Cooper (1953 – 1969)

    Reuben Cooper Snr. (1917 – 1939)

    Joe Daby (1969 – 1982)

    Bill Dempsey (1958 – 1976)

    Cadji Dunn (1980 – 1995)

    Dennis Dunn (1981 – 1999)

    Michael Graham (1971 – 1987)

    Cameron Ilett (1997 – current)

    Jarred Ilett (1993 – 2016)

    Russell Jeffrey (1980 – 2001)

    Edmund Johnston (1952 – 1969)

    David Kantilla Snr. (1958 – 1973)

    Clifford 'Gympie' LewFatt (1960 – 2004)

    Walter LewFatt Snr. (1930 – 1947)

    Michael Long (1980 – 2001)

    Noel Long (1982 – 2000)

    Kelvin Maher (1990 – 2005)

    Gilbert McAdam (1985 – 2000)

    Michael  McLean (1978 – 2010)

    Andrew McLeod (1991 – 2011)

    Mark Motlop (1975 – 2010)

    Henry   Peckham (1946 – 1958)

    Mike Poulter (1962 – 1982)

    Ronald 'Barney' Quall (1970 – 1985)

    Maurice Rioli (1974 – 1995)

    Cyril Rioli Jnr. (2005 – current)

    Cyril Rioli Snr. (1982 – current)

    Billy Roe (1951 – 1971)

    Mathew Stokes (1999 – current)

    John 'Bubba' Tye (1968 – 1980)

    Iggy Vallejo (1997 – current)

    Benny Vigona (1975 – 1986) 

    Darryl White (1990 – 2016) ...

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    The Leeside Lions completed an impressive home and away season, remaining undefeated and being the first team into the 2016 ARFLI Grand Final. It is tremendous reward for effort for the Cork based club and they certainly deserve favouritism for the flag.

    But the Belfast Redbacks have reached their fifth consecutive Grand Final after winning both of their Semi-Final matches at Islandbridge, Dublin, last weekend. By downing both the Galway Magpies and the South Dublin Swans, the Redbacks have set up a fascinating Grand Final. The Leeside Lions have the 2016 form, but the Redbacks have the Grand Final experience over recent years.

    The Lions will host the Grand Final at their home ground in Cork, further strengthening their position as favourites.

    For the Magpies and the Swans, a pre-season awaits where they can build on their successes from this season and address weaknesses exposed across the season’s journey. The Magpies had been heavily in the Grand Final mix, going into the Semi-Finals in second place. But their loss to the Redbacks consigned them to a third place finish, but they would have gained a great deal of confidence and belief from a solid season.

    The Swans, premiers in 2015, have had a season they would prefer to exchange for another go, but they will also take the positives and rebuild again towards success in 2017.

    But the 2016 Grand Final is set to be an exciting and hard fought affair. The Lions are chasing their fifth flag, the Redbacks their third. The Redbacks have been runners-up three times since 2010 and are determined not to add to that. The game will be decided by talent, certainly, but also which team has the greatest desire to determine their own history.

    The Grand Final will be played on Saturday 6th August. ...

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    Here is a task. Name 16 marquee players to capture to public’s imagination over the remainder of this decade. I accept the challenge, so here goes.

    Chelsea Randall, Kellie Gibson, Tayla Harris, Sabrina Frederick-Traub, Brianna Davey, Darcy Vescio, Moana Hope, Emma King, Kara Donnellan, Kiara Bowers, Renee Forth, Emma Swanson, Daisy Pearce, Mel Hickey, Katie Brennan, Ellie Blackburn.

    I know this list is correct as it was the one announced yesterday by the AFL as the marquee players for the national women’s competition in 2017. Oh, but that wasn’t the list you were thinking.

    By marquee maybe it meant Lance Franklin, Jimmy Bartel, Gary Ablett, Dustin Martin, Nick Reiwoldt, Cyril Rioli, Dylan Shiel, Scott Pendlebury, Bryce Gibbs, Daniel Wells, Dyson Heppell, Tom Rockliff, Robbie Gray, Nic Natanui, Bob Murphy, Nathan Jones, Rory Sloane or Nat Fyfe – players who lead their clubs by example and experience.

    Or maybe the marquee player should be the new young gun representing the future more so that the past and present. Maybe it is Jake Lever, Eric Hipwood, Patrick Cripps, Adam Treloar, Darcy Parish, Lachie Weller, Nakia Cockatoo, James Sicily, Jesse Hogan, Jack Martin, Josh Kelly, Chad Wingard, Daniel Rioli, Isaac Heeney, Marcus Bontempelli, Jade Gresham, Mason Wood or Liam Duggan – young guns on whose talent’s the next decade can be built.

    My earliest memories (which coincided with my first batches of footy cards) would have included the likes of John Nicholls, Peter McKenna, Barry Davis, Kevin Murray, Ted Whitten, Peter Hudson, Denis Marshall, Francis Bourke, Ian Stewart, Bob Skilton or Keith Greig. Some of the game’s greatest legends or just bloody good footballers.

    The announcement of the AFL’s marquee women’s players provides a new opportunity which will grow over time. Just as I have had my own marquee players over time, a new generation of women, most importantly girls, will have their own heroines to look up to.

    Daisy Pearce has already reached that status. A regular part of many AFL football shows, Daisy already has a strong following as one of the pioneers of the new push for women’s football. Not far behind are highly exposed stars in Tayla Harris and Katie Brennan. Brisbane Lions and Western Bulldogs fans will soon roar their names at matches as the “go to” players in those teams. Collingwood fans would already be salivating over the remarkable season that Moana Hope has had as she approaches the 100 goal mark in a season. In a club that has boasted Coventry, Lee, Rocca and McKenna in the top 25 alll time AFL/VFL goalkickers list, Hope may be the next Magpie goalkicker of elite status.

    Carlton’s Brianna Davey is a former Australian Soccer goal keeper and might yet be the premier defender in the new women’s competition.

    The list of star quality women’s players is growing rapidly and shows no signs of slowing. Here in my own town of Cairns I have had the pleasure to have coached girls like Elisha King, Kiara Matthew, Tahlia Smith, Judhil Canendo and Sherita Pilot, all of whom are on their own journeys and have the skills to go all the way to the big time. That’s just one far flung northern city.

    Multiply that by hundreds or thousands of other locations and the talent is overflowing.

    So, this list of marquee players for women’s footy stands alongside past incarnations of men’s lists as a beacon to promote the best women players in the land as well as encouraging the next generations. They are all exciting women to watch on the fields of play and their influence amongst future generations of young girls (and likely boys) will be profound and far reaching.

    To read more about the sixteen marquee women’s footballers, go to the article at:

    See also our World Footy News story about British born marquee player Sabrina Frederick-Traub at: British born Fredrick-Traub among marquee players

    Picture: Courtesy ...

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    The following article from the website, written by Nathan Schmook, looks at the signing by the Saints of two more promising Irish recruits ready for 2017. Westmeath product Ray Connellan and Joyce from Kilkenny have ticked enough boxes to impress the St Kilda recruiting department.

    ST KILDA has signed two new Irish rookies as it continues a strategy of building its list with international talent.

    The Saints have signed hurling star Darragh Joyce (right) and International Rules player Ray Connellan, both on two-year deal. 

    The pair trained with St Kilda for three weeks mid-season and hope to relocate to Melbourne before the end of the season. 


    "Our strategy from mid-2013 has been to increase our talent base through different means," Saints recruiting boss Tony Elshaug told The Age.

    "We hope these boys could play a significant part in that."

    Connellan suffered a broken leg several weeks ago and has undergone surgery for two breaks to the fibula above his ankle.

    The 22-year-old was hoping the injury did not cut into his first pre-season with the Saints.

    He attended the AFL Academy Camp in Florida at the start of this year and caught the Saints' attention and is likely to be a Category A rookie on the Saints' list.

    Joyce, who came to the club's attention two years ago when he attended the AFL Irish Combine, is expected to be the club's one allowed Category B Irish rookie.


    The story was also featured on the website back in Ireland (see below):


    AFL team St Kilda have officially announced their acquisition of Westmeath footballer Ray Connellan and Kilkenny hurler Darragh Joyce.

    Connellan, 22, who suffered two breaks in the fibula above his ankle and ligament damage in the Leinster final defeat to Dublin earlier in the month, had already all but confirmed his move to Melbourne.

    Following surgery two days after the provincial showcase, which involved the placement of pins in his leg, Connellan was informed that his recovery period will be roughly 14 weeks.

    Darragh Joyce, the younger brother of Kieran, who previously captained the Kilkenny minors to an All Ireland title in 2014, has long since been linked with a move to the AFL after impressing at a trial in DCU last year, and then on a three-week audition at Seaford in June, also attended by Connellan.

    St Kilda have confirmed that both players have been awarded two-year contracts, and are expected to make the trip Down Under at some stage in September.

    St Kilda recruiter Tony Elshaug said: "We asked them to go home and spend a week just having a real think about what they were committing to," he told Fairfax Media.

    "We wanted them to talk to their families about what they would be giving up and leaving behind in terms of home and their studies and the challenges ahead. They both came back and accepted. To be honest I think they would have been happy to stay in Australia from the time they came out here."


    Among other Irish exports to St Kilda is Kerry All Ireland winner Tommy Walsh, who then moved on to the Sydney Swans. ...

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    The Grand Final places are decided for the AFL London competitions with the West London Wildcats to meet the Wandsworth Demons in the Premiership Division decider. The two teams ran neck and neck all season across the home and away series, both finishing with just the one loss each – to each other – in what will shape up as a very even match.

    The Wildcats made their way to the Grand Final when they downed the Demons 9 10 64 to 8 4 52 the previous weekend in a match where they took the early ascendency and the Demons fought back hard only to fall short. It was a good win for the Wildcats, but not one that suggests any real dominance and the Demons will enjoy their crack at a rematch.

    On the weekend the Demons ground down a spirited North London Lions outfit in the Preliminary Final, winning by 21 points. The Lions had earned their right to contest for the Grand Final by winning their Semi Final against the Wimbledon Hawks. Fresh enough in their memory was their effort to take last year’s flag following effectively the same pathway. But it was not to be this year, though they never stopped throwing themselves at the Demons with a steadying goal later in the final quarter putting the game out of the Lions’ reach.

    Scores: Wandsworth Demons 11 8 74 d North London Lions 8 5 53

    The West London Wildcats have eight flags since 2000. The Wandsworth Demons have seven since 1990. One of the other, or both, has contested 21 of the Grand Finals since 1990. Their combined successes throughout all divisions over the years make them the two most successful AFL London clubs.

    The two clubs have met in the premiership decider eight times and are locked at four flags each. History has both clubs locked closely and the winner next weekend will probably go on and claim to be the league’s most successful club, such is the magnitude of this decider.

    All eyes will be locked on London this weekend and the best team will again prevail.


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    Round 20 kicks off in Melbourne on Friday night with Richmond hosting Collingwood at the MCG. 

    If you want to know when you can see the footy on TV in your part of the world, check out the full schedule below.

    As always schedules are subject to change at the discretion of the local broadcaster so please check local guides for updates. 

    AFANA have also just announced (tentatively) on Twitter that the 2016 AFL Grand Final will be on Fox Sports 2 (FS2) in the USA. (formerly on FSP) and coverage begins 12:30 AM EDT.

    1 5-Aug Night Richmond vs. Collingwood MCG VIC 19:50   09:50 SEVEN
    2 6-Aug Day Sydney vs. Pt Adelaide SCG NSW 13:45   03:45 SEVEN
    3 6-Aug Day Melbourne vs. Hawthorn MCG VIC 14:10   04:10 FOX
    4 6-Aug Twilight GC SUNS vs. GWS GIANTS Metricon Stadium QLD 16:35   06:35 FOX
    5 6-Aug Night Western Bulldogs vs. North Melbourne Etihad Stadium VIC 19:25   09:25 SEVEN
    6 6-Aug Night Adelaide vs. Brisbane Adelaide Oval SA 19:10   09:40 FOX
    7 7-Aug Early Carlton vs. St Kilda MCG VIC 13:10   03:10 FOX
    8 7-Aug Day Geelong vs. Essendon Etihad Stadium VIC 15:20   05:20 SEVEN
    9 7-Aug Twilight Fremantle vs. WC Eagles Domain Stadium WA 14:40   06:40 FOX


    AUSTRALIA PLUS                    
    Asia 5/8 @ 17:30 HKT (Live) 6/8 @ 11:30 HKT (Live) - 6/8 @ 14:30 HKT (Live) 6/8 @ 17:25 HKT (Live) - 7/8 @ 11:00 HKT (Live) - 7/8 @ 14:30 HKT (Live) 10/8 @ 11:00 HKT
    Pacific 5/8 @ 21:30 Fiji (Live) 6/8 @ 15:30 Fiji (Live) - 6/8 @ 18:30 Fiji (Live) 6/8 @ 21:25 Fiji (Live) - 7/8 @ 15:00 Fiji (Live) - 7/8 @ 18:30 Fiji (Live) 10/8 @ 15:00 Fiji
    India 5/8 @ 15:00 IND (Live) 6/8 @ 09:00 IND (Live) - 6/8 @ 12:00 IND (Live) 6/8 @ 14:55 IND (Live) - 7/8 @ 08:30 IND (Live) - 7/8 @ 12:00 IND (Live) 10/8 @ 08:30 IND
    China - - - - - - - - - -
    CLARO SPORTS                    
    Latin America 6/8 @ 08:30 CTU (Delay) - - - - - - - - -
    ESPN - BT SPORT                    
    UK & Ireland 5/8 @ 10:30 BST (Live) 6/8 @ 04:30 BST (Live) - - 6/8 @ 10:00 BST (Live) - 7/8 @ 04:00 BST (Live) - 7/8 @ 07:30 BST (Live) 9/8 @ 19:00 BST
    Caribbean - - - - 6/8 @ 05:00 ET (LIVE) - - - - 12/8 @ 01:00 ET
    FOX SPORTS 1                    
    USA - - - - 6/8 @ 05:00 ET (Live) - - - - -
    FOX SPORTS 2                    
    USA 5/8 @ 05:30 ET (Live) - - - - - - - - -
    FOX SOCCER PLUS                    
    USA - 5/8 @ 23:30 ET (Live) - - - - 6/8 @ 23:00 ET (Live) - 7/8 @ 02:30 ET (Live) 8/8 @ 24:00 ET
    ORBIT SHOWTIME NETWORK                    
    Middle East 5/8 @ 13:30 GST (Live) - - 6/8 @ 10:30 GST (Live) 6/8 @ 13:00 GST (Live) - - - 7/8 @ 10:30 GST (Live) 9/8 @ 18:00 GST
    GEE - Boats & Cruises                    
    Worldwide (excl. Aust.) 5/8 @ 09:30 GMT (Live) 6/8 @ 03:30 GMT (Live) 6/8 @ 04:00 GMT (Live) 6/8@ 06:30 GMT (Live) 6/8 @ 09:00 GMT (Live) 6/8 @ 09:30 GMT (Live) 7/8 @ 03:00 GMT (Live) 7/8 @ 05:00 GMT (Live) 7/8 @ 06:30 GMT (Live) -
    SKY SPORTS                    
    New Zealand - - - - - - - 8/8 @ 24:00 NZT (Delay) - -
    Canada - 7/8 @ 06:00 ET (Delay) - - 6/8 @ 05:00 ET (Live) - - - - -
    New Zealand 5/8 @ 21:30 NZT (Live) - 6/8 @ 16:00 NZT (Live) - 6/8 @ 22:00 NZT (Delay) - 7/8 @ 15:00 NZT (Live) - 7/8 @ 22:35 NZT (Delay) 10/8 @ 18:00 NZT
    Worldwide (excl. Aust) 5/8 @ 09:50 GMT (Live) 6/8 @ 03:45 GMT (Live) 6/8 @ 04:10 GMT (Live) 6/8 @ 06:35 GMT (Live) 6/8 @ 09:25 GMT (Live) 6/8 @ 09:40 GMT (Live) 7/8 @ 03:10 GMT (Live) 7/8 @ 05:20 GMT (Live) 7/8 @ 06:40 GMT (Live) -

    *We also recommend you check out the AFANA website if you are in North America as they tend to have the very latest information on broadcast schedules or changes. ...

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    Defending AFL International Cup champions PNG are gathering their best squad of players and drilling them but are also on the lookout for any new talent.

    The PNG Games later in the year will be part of the selection process as it will provide a good opportunity for the AFL PNG officials to assess the players in selecting the final squad for the 2017 AFL International Cup.

    AFL PNG are also working to see the women's team known as the Flames back to the International Cup (they failed to send a team to IC14 after previously playing in the IC11 tournament).  AFL Development Manager in the South PacificBen Drew recently responded to us on Twitter that there was "every chance the PNG Flames will attend"

    The following video interview with AFL PNG's Senior Operations Football Manager Rex Leka appeared on PNG's EM TV


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  • 08/04/16--07:00: IC17 just 365 days away
  • In just 365 days it will all be on again.  Footy players from around the world will be in Melbourne, the months (and in some cases years) of preparations will be over.  The tournament will be launched.  Promotional shots will be done.  New footy jumpers will be laid out.  Everyone (most who have paid their own way) will be ready to play footy for their country in the city where the game was founded

    It will be different for every nation. Some will have been working on their team since IC14 wound up, they will be at least partly funded by well organised sponsorship campaigns or alternate forms of funding.  Some will have been scraping a squad and the funding to get them here together for the past few months.  There are always some nations that are touch and go to attend up until the final week before the first bounce.

    One thing is likely as with each of the previous tournaments it will be bigger and better than ever.  In 2011 18 men's teams and 7 women's teams competed (with USA and Canada each sending a second women's team.  In 2017 we may see the return of nations that couldn't make it in 2011.  Two of these teams the "Peace Team" comprised of Israeli and Palestinian players and the Timor Leste Crocs have both shown positive signs in recent times that gives hope to their reprise. 

    Denmark finished fourth in 2002 but were unable to attend 2014.  They were dearly missed and hopes are high that they will also return in 2011.  The PNG men's team won the 2014 tournament but their women's team, the PNG Flames were unable to attend and they also seem likely to return in 2017.


    Other teams that have previously competed such as Samoa and Spain do not look likely to be back in 2017 but there are hopes there will some new teams present this time around.  One of those is  "Indochina" which is a proposed team from AFL Asia which would be made up of nationals from Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar.

    The Pakistan Shaheens debuted at the 2014 International Cup as a team that was very different to others that had competed in International Cup competition previously.  The Shaheens were all locally (Australian) based players rather than a team from the competing nation travelling to represent the footy as played in their own country.  Their presence was questioned by many who believed the team really belonged in one of the multicultural tournaments held regularly in Melbourne.  Whether the Shaheens can return in 2017 with players from footy in Pakistan remains to be seen, we were told in 2014 that their team made up exclusively of expats would be a one-off.

    Other potential nations in the men's competition  that could debut in 2017 would likely come out of Europe.  Croatia were close to attending in 2014, but could not cover the financial cost and Germany have to date chosen to spend their money and remain playing locally in Europe.  Russia, Iceland, Norway and Portugal would all be outsiders but some countries have made late rallies to attend before.

    In the women's competition debuting nations will likely be Great Britain and New Zealand.  There is also some hope that South Africa, France and China could also bring women's teams. 

    Eligibility is always an issue at the International Cup with a number of nations having players that fit within the qualification rules but have a significant number of Australian based players who have played all or most of their footy in Australia and in some cases not at all in their own country.  When those players turn out to be dominant players in their team their are always questions from the opposition as to whether that is really fair.  At this stage we believe the eligibility rules will remain the same and while they are a pretty good balance to ensure that those who have learnt the game in Australia as kids/teens cannot compete there will inevitably be some debate about individuals and the overall makeup of teams.

    Another major issue for the International Cup is the structure of the tournament.  Past tournaments have tried to allow all nations to win the tournament if they were good enough.  Lightning rounds of shorter matches were introduced to give weaker teams a chance to play against the best teams and maintain a hope of winning the competition.  But even with reduced duration of these matches many blow-outs still occurred in 2008 and 2011.  With even more teams likely to play in 2017 we may see multiple divisions from the beginning of the tournament this time around.  Regardless there will be some nations that are not happy no matter what structure the tournament ultimately takes. 

    Between now and August 5th, 2017 there will be a lot of hard work on and off the field around the world to once again make it all happen and once again give players the chance to represent their country playing Australian football.  It will come around quickly, we hope you are all ready.  We are looking forward to it. ...

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    The Indonesian Garudas debuted at the 2014 International Cup and now a year out from the 2017 International Cup they are aiming to return.


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    Another great story on footy development work in PNG.


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  • 08/06/16--16:23: Leeside Lions Reign Supreme

  • Maybe it was an omen that the Belfast Redbacks’ bus was late and the ARFLI Grand Final was delayed by 20 minutes…maybe it did induce an unsettled air into the drilled routine of the Redbacks. But out on the field it wasn’t anything to do with bus trips. It was the Leeside Lions team which determined the outcome of the day as the piled on more pressure during each quarter to win the 2016 premiership by 52 points.

    To the Lions, all that mattered was their fifth flag and they claimed that in fine style.

    After a tough opening quarter, largely even, the Lions held a narrow three point lead. Everything pointed to a tight contest with the Redbacks having more scoring opportunities but the Lions more accurate. Quarter Time: Leeside Lions 3 1 19 v Belfast Redbacks 2 4 16.

    The second quarter saw the Lions begin to flex their muscle over their opponents. A four goal to one quarter ensured that the Lions had grabbed the initiative and went into the main break with a very handy 20 point lead. Half Time: Leeside Lions 7 4 46 v Belfast Redbacks 3 8 26.

    The “premiership quarter” was not a letdown. Belfast knew they had to up the ante and make a strong charge at the Lions. Whilst they did kick three goals for the quarter, they just couldn’t hold back the Lions which kicked five goals of their own the put the game almost out of reach. Three Quarter Time: Leeside Lions 12 5 77 v Belfast Redbacks 6 10 46.

    The Redbacks had one last chance to reverse the trends of the day and make their own luck. A huge last quarter would do it. But the Lions could already smell blood and sense the occasion. The flag would be theirs with a big finish, and that’s how it panned out with Leeside kicking four goals to one in the final quarter to run out convincing winners and deserved premiers after an undefeated season.

    Premierships are only possible as a team performance, and the entire Lions outfit gelled to ensure success. But a seven goal haul to best afield, Matty Moore, certainly ensured that the hardwork further down field was capitalised on.

    Congratulations go to the Leeside Lions and commiserations to the Belfast Redbacks. Both teams will now rest a little before turning their attention to more international pursuits and then planning for 201 ...

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