PSS International Removals to continue Partnership

Signing on for their fourth consecutive year as official partners, AFL Europe are excited to welcome back PSS International Removals.

PSS are a family run, international removals company equipped with staff that are experts in the field whom are dedicated to providing a friendly and professional moving service to every customer.

Such a service highlights one of the many reasons why PSS International Removals are known as the UK’s 1st Choice for international removals & shipping.

AFL Europe General Manager, Ryan Davey, couldn’t be more happy to see the partnership with PSS International Removals continue to grow.

“John (Moynes) and PSS (International Removals) have been of great support to AFL Europe over the years,” Davey said.

“From sponsoring one of our key feature article’s ‘Around the Grounds’, to shipping over hundreds of footy’s for AFL Europe, PSS continue to provide both us and the growth of Australian Football with excellent support.”

John Moynes, Director of PSS International Removals, echoed much of a similar response.

“PSS is proud to have sponsored AFL Europe for the past three years and look forward to continuing our support,” Moynes said.

“We have found that they are a great team to work with and which shows in how they have grown over the past few years.”

During this difficult time, PSS are currently fully operational and have reduced their rates to ensure they can make it easier for backpackers or returning residents to make it back home to Australia and New Zealand.

See special offers, including those for AFL Europe members, here.

For more information, visit their website www.pssremovals.com or their Facebook @pssinternationalremovals.

2020 Euro Cup Postponed

AFL Europe has announced that the Euro Cup, scheduled to take place on the 6th of June, will officially be postponed to take place later in 2020.

The annual nine-a-side tournament, which was set to be hosted by AFL Scotland in Stirling, sees European national sides face off to contest for the title of champions of Europe.

The decision to postpone has been made due to the uncertainty of the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and with the priority of the health and welfare of our players, umpires, officials and the wider AFL Europe community in mind.

Due to a lack of field and venue availability in Stirling in the second half of the year, AFL Europe will be sourcing an alternate location for the rescheduled 2020 event.

Given this, AFL Scotland has been automatically granted the rights to host the Euro Cup in Summer 2021.

We assure our community that we working hard to find possible dates and locations for a postponement of this event with information being made available as soon as it’s confirmed.

We look forward to putting on Europe’s premier tournament later in the year when conditions have improved.

Down Under Centre to return for year four

AFL Europe is pleased to announce that they will once again be partnering with the Down Under Centre, in what is set to be the Down Under Centre’s fourth year as an official partner.

The Down Under Centre are the Australian and New Zealand migration experts, always ready to help you with anything you need to make your migration experience stress free.

Located in London, just 30 seconds away from Ealing Broadway Station, the Down Under Centre specialise in visas, skills assessments and assisting you with finding you work before you move.

Owner of the company, Wes Zandt, spoke highly of the partnership that continues to develop with AFL Europe.

“I’m very proud to associate my brand with AFL Europe, it (footy) is the best game in the world.

“It’s also great to support and see the continued growth of football outside of Australia as it is so important for all Aussies living in Europe,” Zandt said.

The partnership will continue to allow AFL Europe to use the facilities of the Down Under Centre to hold future coaching courses and other events.

AFL Europe General Manager, Ryan Davey, is delighted to welcome back Wes Zandt and the Down Under Centre as official partners.

“I’m extremely excited to see what 2020 holds for the Down Under Centre and AFL Europe, in what is now a four-year partnership,” Davey said.

“It’s always great to have support from people like Wes, who is such a big advocate for Aussie Rules footy in Europe.”

With offices located in the UK, Australia and New Zealand, the Down Under Centre are accessible all over the world for any of your relocation needs.

To find out more about the Down Under Centre, visit their website www.downundercentre.com or their Facebook @downundercentre and Instagram @downundercentre_.

2020 ANZAC Cup Cancelled

AFL Europe regret to announce the cancellation of the upcoming ANZAC Cup in Villers-Bretonneux.

Following on from yesterday’s statement made by AFL Europe General Manager, Ryan Davey, this has been another tough but necessary decision to make due to the increasing spread and danger of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

New travel warnings that are being announced as well as nation lockdowns were also major factors that led to the decision that has ultimately been made in the best interest of the health and safety of our players, coaches, umpires, officials & the general public.

Furthermore, the Department of Veterans’ Affairs of the Australian Government has recently announced the cancellation of overseas ANZAC Day ceremonies. The dawn service which is held near Villers-Bretonneux, is an important part of the event that is attended by all involved to commemorate those who fought in WW1, and more specifically, in the Second Battle of Villers-Bretonneux.

Former AFL players, Eric Mackenzie and Mark Bolton, were confirmed as co-coaches for the Australian Spirit sides and both men shared their disappointment in missing out on their first ANZAC Cup experience.

Veteran ANZAC Cup coach Andrew Unsworth (coach of the French National men’s team) felt a double blow as this news followed the AFL’s announcement that the 2020 International Cup would also be postponed until 2021.

The players that were selected to play for Australia Spirit on ANZAC Day were done so based on their own personal or family connection to the armed forces rather than their specific footballing experience or ability, placing extra importance on the already momentous honour of representing Australia.

We would like to congratulate the men and women selected and hope to see you all available to play in the next ANZAC Cup.

See the Australian squads below.

To our AFL Europe Community, 

Like many of you, AFL Europe has been monitoring the effect of COVID-19 (coronavirus) on the world around us. Late last week, we made the tough but necessary decision to cancel our annual Champions League event, and on Tuesday we saw the AFL postpone the International Cup. Meanwhile the fate of ANZAC Cup, Euro Cup & many more domestic competitions remains uncertain. Please know that the health, safety and well-being of our players, coaches, umpires, officials & the general public is always at the forefront before every difficult decision. 

We are assessing our options for rescheduling the cancelled/postponed tournaments to a later date, and we will work with leagues from all over Europe to do the same, although these competitions will only go ahead if we can provide a safe environment for our people. 

As referenced in a statement from the AFL earlier in the week, “we are a game, but not the main game. The main game is looking after the community and that is the clear priority for everyone at the moment.” 

This moment in history transcends our love for this great game. It is the passion, enthusiasm and dedication you have all displayed on the field and our team spirit that is being called upon now to stand together and support each other, especially for those that are more vulnerable.

As a community we will get through this difficult time and, when we do, AFL will be waiting for us on the other side. I look forward to seeing you all back out on the park doing what you do best and what you love most in the not so distant future. 

The AFL Europe team and I wish you, your family and your team a healthy break during this taxing time.

 

Best Wishes,

 

Ryan Davey 

AFL Europe

Oxford and Cambridge to meet for 100th Varsity Match

It’s the longest running Australian Football rivalry (outside of Australia), as the Oxford and Cambridge Universities prepare for a significant weekend of footy in the UK.

The two teams have developed a history that dates back to the early 1900’s, where the first Varsity match took place in 1911. Becoming a yearly fixture from 1921, this weekend will mark the 100th Varsity game between the two men’s teams.

Oxford University, hosting this year’s Varsity at the Horspath Athletics and Sports Ground at 2:00PM, will look to defend their men’s title in what is always an intense battle.

But before then, and kicking off the day at 12:00PM, the girls sides will meet for what will be their third year competing in the Varsity game.

A draw in 2018, and a loss in 2019, the Oxford women are ready to break their spell in 2020.

“Varsity holds a special place in our competition calendar, I don’t know anyone who wouldn’t give a leg to win a Varsity match,” said Oxford President Kathryn Leslie.

The mindset at Cambridge is no different. Coming off a 1-point grand final win at the 2020 Fitzpatrick Cup, as well as an appearance in the National University League grand final, Cambridge President Pauline O’Malley says the girls are ready to continue their hot form in 2020.

“For us, Varsity is easily the biggest game of the year, and is what we train for.

“There is something extra about playing in the 100th, and is definitely a win the club wants to come away with.”

Cambridge Uni celebrating the Fitzpatrick Cup

The men’s match in 2019 saw Oxford come away victorious, as Cambridge readies to travel south-west in an attempt to seek redemption and bring home the prestigious cup.

Neither of the teams managed to find a place in the grand final at the recent Fitzpatrick Cup, with Oxford finishing third, and Cambridge fifth.

However, the National University League told a different story, with Cambridge managing to finish second and reaching the grand final (loss to Birmingham), whilst Oxford finished third.

Despite the intense on-field competition, the history between the two clubs has always brought out great levels of respect towards one-another.

“Regardless of the outcomes, it will be a great day in Oxford,” said Pauline.

“We love travelling up there and while the games are fierce, it’s always great to get together after the game and have a few beers and a good chin-wag.”

The 100th annual Varsity match is sure to put on a show, and we wish the best of luck to both sides competing.

To find out more on this year’s Varsity match, visit the official Facebook event.

Jackson Jones – AFL Europe

2020 Preseason Tournaments Recap

With the Australian Football season just around the corner, we have seen a number of tournaments take place around the continent with dozens of teams taking every opportunity for an international hit out.

These community held events give an insight into how teams have been going over the pre-season by giving spectators, coaches and players a look into how teams have developed over the time off.

Teams from the Netherlands, France, Sweden, Denmark, Poland, Germany, England, Scotland & more competed fiercely throughout these extremely competitive games. Below you will find an overview of the tournaments and some of the highlights of the first matches of 2020.

 

Dragon Cup

Cardiff, Wales – February 29th

On the last day of February, the Cardiff Panthers held the Dragon Cup, attracting men’s and women’s teams from around the UK to compete in the inaugural Welsh tournament. However, as two storms struck Wales just a week prior to the tournament, outdoor grounds were flooded and were in no condition to be played on.

Local clubs and councils had to cancel all outdoor sport, resulting in the travelling teams cancelling their plans to head to Cardiff. But two teams from London were still eager to make the journey, as present players and staff members came together to turnaround what was set to be a cancelled event.

“A few teams reluctantly pulled out, but the West London Wildcats and London Swans still came to Cardiff, and we managed to secure an indoor artificial pitch where we played a combined game against the Wildcats,” said new Cardiff Panthers club president, Scott Jones.

“A combination of players from different Welsh league teams came together, and made the most of the opportunity to compete.”

In the end, the Wildcats were far too good for the collective side, but things are on the up for Welsh footy.

“We are looking forward to the clocks going forward, and moving training to outside,” said Scott.

“We are hoping to set up some mixed non-contact matches in the summer, to encourage more players from different sports to take up and enjoy AFL.”

His final words turned back to the attention of the Dragon Cup, as he was so proud of the off-field work to allow the tournament to continue.

“A huge thanks to all the volunteers and organisers, particularly the efforts of Calumn Newman and Carissa Turner, who pulled this event together despite the setbacks.”

“Thank you also to those that attended, and hopefully we can re-run the event again next year!”

 

Gallia Cup

Paris, France – March 7th            

The third annual Gallia Cup, Europe’s first all-female tournament, was hosted by the Paris Cockerelles and the Antony Blues.

2020 saw teams visiting from Germany (Rheinland Lions) and Netherlands (Amsterdam Devils) to compete in a three-match series to determine the winner of the Gallia Cup. Coinciding with the launch of the Western European Australian Football Women’s League (WEWL) and their first tournament, the day was sure to be one to edge into the history books.

Photo via Patrick Vielcanet

Off-field, joint efforts from Joanne Mouradian (Paris Cockerelles) and Steven Ryan (Antony Blues) saw the day run as a great success. From creating initial communications for competing teams, to running the canteen, they were responsible to make sure absolutely everything was organised to allow the tournaments to run smoothly.

On-field, games featured a high quality standard of women’s footy from all three of the Cockerelles, Lions and Devils.

“The games were played with good spirit, with tough contests and plenty of goals being scored,” said Joanne.

“There were many highlights of the day, the most important being that all three teams wore pink armbands to remember Janine Benecke, one of the original Rheinland Lions, who was devastatingly killed earlier this year in a tragic accident.”

If you would like to support Janine’s family, and to help raise awareness of the impacts of drinking and driving, visit the Instagram pages below.

@janine_goes_around_the_world
@go_pink_for_life

Photo via Patrick Vielcanet

Paris got off to a quick start in their first match against an inexperienced Amsterdam side, eventuating as 46-point winners with 21 scoring shots to just the Devils’ five.

Game two consisted of Paris again and a tough German side in what led to a thrilling contest. The Lions held a lead of three goals heading into the final break, soon to be blown away by a Paris side that kicked four unanswered goals in the fourth to result as ten-point winners.

The final match of the tournament was between the Lions and the Devils. After a tough match against the Cockerelles, the Lions could not keep up with Amsterdam. Putting pressure on the scoreboard early, Amsterdam would runaway as 33-point winners.

The results from the three games saw the home side Paris, win the Gallia Cup!

Photo via Patrick Vielcanet

Joanne was ecstatic with the runnings of the day and the efforts by all teams.

“A lot of fun was had by all involved on the day and we are already looking forward to the next rematch in May (in Cologne),” said Joanne.

“As usual, we had a whole host of volunteers who generously helped us out, and we couldn’t have done it without them.

“Also, a shoutout to both Stephen Dillon and Lisa Wilson, who were a huge support.”

Final Results:
Match 1
Paris       11.10 – 76       defeated       Amsterdam        5.0 – 30.
Match 2
Paris         4.7 – 31         defeated       Cologne              3.3 – 21.
Match 3
Cologne   3.0 – 18       defeated by    Amsterdam        7.9 – 51.
 

Leprechaun Cup

Belfast, Ireland – March 7th  

Historically, the Leprechaun Cup has been a small pre-season friendly game for Belfast with only one or two other teams. It now brings together almost ten men’s and women’s clubs competing to win it all at the tournament.

Coordinating most of the tournament organisation, along with David McElhone and Dean Skinner, Belfast Redbacks club president Conor Mallon believes the 2020 tournament has been one of the greatest they’ve held.

“The standard of footy being played was definitely the highest we’ve seen at the Leprechaun Cup in recent years,” said Conor.

“The addition of the clubs coming over from London, Scotland and Amsterdam seemed to inject great pace into the games and local clubs definitely had to up their game in the contests.”

Photo via Cyril Boyd

Mens teams competing in the tournament included Wandsworth, Amsterdam, Belfast, North Down, Cork Institute of Technology, South Dublin and the Galway Magpies (playing alongside the West Lothian Eagles).

Amsterdam impressed all, putting on a high quality brand of footy all day, to come out on top in what was a fierce grand final against Wandsworth.

The women travelled over in good numbers, having two teams from Wandsworth and the Scottish Sirens mixed with a few Irish players.

In the final, the Wandsworth women conceded victory to the Sirens in a well-fought match.

“It was great to see such a successful day where everyone enjoyed themselves after all the hard work that went on behind the scenes”, said Conor.

“It was great to have some new players along to the Leprechaun Cup 2020 to give them a taste of competitive footy, and we look forward to them playing in the season ahead.”

Final Results:

Mens Winner: Amsterdam Devils

Womens Winner: Scottish Sirens

 

Footy vs Bush fires Fundraiser

Berlin, Germany – March 7th

After the catastrophic bush fires that have devastated Australia over the last few months, the world came together to donate whatever they could towards the environmental rebuild of the country’s affected areas. With millions of funds raised around the world, Pierre Vaxelaire felt urged to do what he could to help raise money. Pierre, who is a member of the Berlin Crocodiles,  told AFL Europe that because a large contingent of Australians were apart of the club, the idea of creating a tournament and collecting donations seemed to be the right thing to do.

“I had this crazy idea of raising money for the bush fires and the Australian Community,” Pierre said.

“It was clear that we would get the support from the rest of club to follow through with our idea, so the proposal of creating a friendly tournament with teams from Europe seemed like a ‘win-win’ situation!”

The tournament itself consisted of both a women’s competition and a men’s competition with teams coming from Germany, Poland, Sweden and Denmark. Each team played three games throughout the day with halves of fifteen minutes each.

The games played by the men were extremely competitive between all teams, the Grand Final in the men’s came down to the Odense Lions and the Berlin Gaelic Club, after Berlin West forfeited their spot in the Grand Final to give the second place teams a chance at redemption. The Berlin Gaelic Club proved to be too good in the clash, taking the tournament out by 25 points.

Despite the muddy pitch and freezing weather conditions, all teams in the women’s competition fought extremely hard and competitively throughout the day. The Berlin Crocodiles and Malmö Lynx were the sides that came out on top and faced off in the Grand Final. The Lynx made it hard for Berlin, but the Crocodiles showed strong determination and were able to keep the trophy at home this year defeating the opposition by 27 points.

Pierre was incredibly proud of the how the tournament went, noting to AFL Europe that the day itself was a real success!

“It was such a brilliant day for our club. It was good to see such great commitment from all the competing teams throughout the day.

“Once the games had ended, everyone was so friendly and open to get to know each other – and that is what it is all about. All in all, we are all extremely happy about the day and can’t wait to develop our club further throughout the football season this year.”

The Footy vs Bush fire tournament raised a total of €1350 for Habitat for Humanity Australia.

Well done to all that were involved!

Final Results:
Women’s Grand Final:  Berlin Crocodiles    6.9 – 45   defeated   Malmö Lynx   3.1 – 18.
Men’s Grand Final:        Berlin GAA              6.3 – 39   defeated   Odense Lions 2.2 – 14.
 
Dylan Mutu & Jackson Jones – AFL Europe

2020 Champions League Cancelled

AFL Europe has unfortunately cancelled the upcoming Champions League tournament, which was set to take place on the 4th of April in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

As with all of our events, our number one priority is the health and welfare of our players, umpires, officials and the wider AFL Europe community. With the total number of COVID-19 cases rapidly rising throughout Europe and the United Kingdom, we believe this is the safest decision to make.

The recently enforced travel warnings, lockdowns, widespread event cancellations and gatherings ban in Netherlands have also been taken into consideration in making this decision.

AFL Europe will investigate the possibility of rescheduling the event later on in the year, and will update participating teams accordingly.

Our deepest apologies to those that were looking forward to this event, particularly those that had made travel arrangements.

Irish Watch: AFLW Round 5 Review

It was a defining weekend in the AFLW as an action packed round saw some teams pull away towards finals actions and others plummet to the bottom of the standings.

 The headline would be the heroics of Irish veteran Cora Staunton, or Four-ton, as she starred up forward for the Giants in their big win against the Tigers with four majors and a best on ground performance.

We also saw a number of our Irish girls take their games to the next level and really solidify themselves in their respective teams as we head into the pointy end of the season.

North Melbourne claimed the top spot in conference A with a statement win against reigning premiers Adelaide at North Hobart Oval.

Leading from start to finish, the Crows were simply no match for the slick Kangaroos as they destroyed them inside the contest and burnt them on the outside to claim a 42 point.

After impressing last week against Gold Coast, Irishwoman Aileen Gilroy continued her good form with another solid performance across half back.

Picking up 12 disposals and four marks, Gilroy continues to look more and more comfortable at the level as she constantly looked to take the game on and use her skills to set up North’s ball movement.

It was a big day for GWS, who did their finals chances no harm with a big win against cellar dwellers Richmond in Wagga Wagga.

Dominating from start to finish, GWS were quick to get over the disappointment of last week and buried the inexperienced Tigers with their work around the contest and ability to get out and spread.

After struggling majorly last weekend, veteran champion Cora Staunton responded in a big way with a best on ground performance.

Moving into the forward line, Staunton was on fire from the outset slotting a season high four goals and becoming the Giants real focal point in attack.

However it wasn’t just her ability to hit the scoreboard that made her so valuable, as she was constantly around the footy picking up 11 disposals and applied outstanding pressure laying six tackles.

Carlton continued their good form with a big win over St Kilda at Ikon Park on Saturday night.

After a tight opening half, the Blues really hit their straps in the third term piling on three goals to none to put considerable distance between themselves and the hard battling Saints.

Despite going down, the Saints would be buoyed by the return of Irish key defender Clara Fitzpatrick from a nasty concussion sustained against Adelaide three weeks ago.  

Slotting straight into the Saints defence, she was as solid as ever playing a shut down role on the dangerous Tayla Harris, who could only muster one solitary major.  

Along with her work defensively, Fitzpatrick worked hard the other way picking up 12 disposals, two marks and two tackles, showing her versatility as a key defender.

Collingwood claimed a much needed win over the struggling Western Bulldogs on Saturday night to keep themselves in the Conference B finals mix.

After a poor showing on the bright lights of Marvel Stadium last week, the Pies came out swinging kicking four goals to none in the first half to essentially seal victory. 

Collingwood would keep their foot on the pedal for the majority of proceedings, with their best four quarter performance of the season yielding an impressive 32 point victory.  

Sarah Rowe continued her dominant season with perhaps her best performance yet against the Bulldogs.

Playing through the midfield and pushing forward, she was a constant headache for the Dogs who had no answer for her work around stoppage and speed on the spread.

Picking up 21 disposals, five marks, two tackles and two goals, it was a well rounded performances by one of the competitions most damaging midfielders.

Melbourne chalked up the biggest win in their history in a 66 point rout of the West Coast Eagles at Casey Fields.

Clearly dominant from start to finish, the Demons looked every bit a flag contender as they gave West Coast an eye opening afternoon at the office. 

Now sitting second in conference B behind the Dockers, Melbourne will be looking to continue on this good form and build a really solid base heading into the finals. 

Niamh McEvoy enjoyed a career best afternoon at Casey Fields on Sunday as she really shone in the dominant Demons forward set up. 

Picking up 14 disposals, one mark and five tackles, McEvoy showed herself to be a valuable small forward with her pressure simply outstanding all day.

She would also prove her worth around the sticks, as she cleverly roved a pack and slotted through a nice goal to add to what was a triumphant day for the irishwoman.

Fremantle continued their undefeated start to the AFLW season in a top of the ladder clash with Brisbane on Sunday afternoon.

Built up as the game of the round, the Dockers were up for the fight from the beginning with a scintillating five goal first quarter.

Opening up a three goal lead at quarter time, Fremantle would keep the Lions at an arms length for the rest of the match, cruising to an 18 point victory.

Despite being on the losing side, Brisbane forward Orla O’Dwyer continued to show her immense talent with another solid performance.

A real force inside the Lion’s attacking 50, O’Dwyer would constantly make the opposition defenders sweat, with her speed and athleticism causing problems all day.

Playing a bit more up the ground, O’Dwyer would pick up 11 disposals, two marks and two tackles with her knowledge of the game and comfort out on the field becoming more and more apparent each week.

By Zac Standish  

Irish Watch: AFLW Round 4 Review

It was another big weekend of action in the AFLW with a number of storylines developing across all 7 matches.

Whether it be the Eagles upsetting the Western Bulldogs to claim their first ever AFLW win, or the Brisbane Lions pulling ahead as clear ladder leaders in conference A, fans were definitely treated to a terrific round of football.

As for our Irish girls it was another week of growth, with many looking more comfortable out on the field and putting in game changing performances for their respective sides.

It was a big night not only for football but for the broader Australian community on Friday night as Melbourne and Collingwood took part in the bushfire relief double header as a curtain raiser for the much anticipated state of origin match.

 A crunch match up in terms of ladder positioning, it was always going to be a fiery game as two of Victoria’s biggest clubs went at it on the hallowed turf of Marvel Stadium.

With so much on the line, it would be the Demons that came up trumps as the girls dug in hard and put together their best four quarter performance of the year.  

Leading from start to finish, Melbourne were fantastic around the contest all night and produced a warning to the rest of the competition that come finals time they will certainly be a player.

Although on the losing side, Sarah Rowe continued her fantastic start to the season as she used her endurance and skill to push forward and have an impact in front of goal as well as around the ball.

One of the competition’s breakout players, Rowe’s ability to read the play has been nothing short of outstanding as she constantly found herself in the right positions and took her chances in front of the sticks.

Finishing with 12 disposals, 5 marks, 2 tackles and 2 goals, it was a well rounded performance from the Irishwoman who was one of very few bright spots on a poor night for Collingwood.

North Melbourne continued their rise up the Conference A standings with a tight win over the inexperienced Gold Coast Suns at their traditional Arden Street home.  

A see sawing affair for most of the first three quarters, the class and experience of the Kangaroos would eventually reign supreme as they got on top in the last and pulled away with a crucial 13 point win.

After an indifferent start to her AFLW journey, North Melbourne’s Aileen Gilroy put together the best performance of her brief career on Saturday afternoon.

Playing across half back, Gilroy would use her speed to get into dangerous positions and damage the Suns with her excellent skills.  

Clearly adapting more and more to the game, Gilroy would put it all together collecting 14 disposals, four marks and two tackles going at a respectable 66% disposal efficiency.  

As North Melbourne inch closer to the finals they will be buoyed by the improvement of Gilroy as she has the potential to be a real difference maker for this team moving forward.

After a harsh opening three weeks to their AFLW existence the West Coast Eagles would finally break through with a gutsy four point win upset win over the Western Bulldogs in front of their home fans on Saturday night.

It was a roller coaster ride from the outset at Leederville Oval as after getting off to a nice start the Eagles were made to sweat as the Bulldogs came roaring back into the contest.  

With Isabel Huntington closing the lead to within a kick mid way through the final term, many thought the young eagles would run out of gas as the experienced Bulldogs began kicking into gear.

However, West Coast would hold firm and defend for their lives as they managed to thwart all opposition attacks and come away with a memorable victory.  

Irishwomen Grace and Niamh Kelly would be stand out contributors for the Eagles all night, as they used their endurance and speed to create space on the wings and win the ball at crucial times.

Picking up 14 and 16 disposals respectively, the pair could have been mistaken for 100 game veterans as they showed excellent composure in the tense final minutes and really led from the front with their attack on the ball.  

An excellent sign for West Coast as they look to build an exciting young team over the next few seasons.

It would be sweet Grand Final revenge for Carlton on Sunday afternoon as they came from behind to claim a season defining victory against Adelaide at Hisense Stadium.

After a cinderella start for the Crows which saw returning Rhiannon Metcalfe kick the opening goal after two years out of the game, Daniel Harford’s girls dug deep and wrestled back control of the game just before half time.

They would then open it up after the main break as they simply ran the reigning premiers off their feet to claim an 8 point win.  

Despite not coming away with the points the Crows will be happy with Ailish Considine’s return to the lineup as she really upped her forward pressure and reaped the rewards from hard work.  

Although only registering 7 disposals, her work inside Adelaide’s forward 50 certainly did not go unnoticed as he constantly harassed the Blues defenders and snapped an incredibly difficult goal in the second quarter.

Brisbane jumped up to the top of Conference A with a comprehensive 28 point win over GWS on Sunday afternoon.

After letting the game slip late against the Suns last week, the Lions would make sure they would gain the full reward from their hard work putting in a clinical four quarter performance.

Leading from start to finish, the Lions put GWS to the sword all afternoon and showed themselves and genuine contenders come the pointy end of the season.

 Livewire irishwoman Orla O’Dwyer was again superb up forward for the Lions as she used her athleticism and speed to make herself a constant threat to the Giants defenders.

Although she didn’t hit the scoreboard, O’Dwyer was consistently getting herself into dangerous positions and was crucial in setting up much of Brisbane’s attacking play.

Picking up 11 disposals she showed herself to be a valuable asset to the Lions forward line moving forward, with her team first approach a particular highlight of her game.

 

By Zac Standish