View the videos below for all match highlights.
Australian Football stars at Svanholm Park, Copenhagen
The AFL’s Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) Academy Program team, as part of their European tour, will visit Copenhagen on Tuesday 9th and Wednesday 10th of April.
From 9.30am on Wednesday 10th April up to 500 local school children will join junior clinics to learn about Australian Football from a number of AFL legends including Dipper, Tadhg Kennelly and Michael O’Loughlin. (pending the teacher lock-out/ strike).
From 11.30am the Australian U18’s team will be mixed with 16 of the best European players to form two exciting teams to take on each other in the highest level of football ever seen on the European Continent. This is an extension of the Easter Series with the game sure to be highly contested as the best junior players in the world take on each other for the first time.
Opvarmningskampe fra 9.30 (warm-up games from 9.30) Brøndby Strand vs Brøndbyvester vs Brøndbyøster skoler (the local schools involved) SE AUSTRALSK FODBOLD LIVE PÅ SVANHOLM PARK ONSDAG DEN 10. APRIL (WATCH AUSTRALIAN FOOTBALL LIVE AT SVANHOLM PARK, WEDNESDAY APRIL 10) EUROPA VS AUSTRALIEN U18 (EUROPE vs AUSTRALIA U18) Kampstart: 11.30 – 10. April 2013 (Match start: 11.30 – April 10) Svanholm Alle 2, 2660 Brøndby Strand (Adress) Kun 800m fra Brøndby Strand Station (S-tog) (Only 800m from Brøndby Strand train station)
There will also be a training session at Farum Football Club at 5.30pm on Tuesday 9th of April. If you are interested in learning more about Austrailan Football and the league in Denmark you are welcome to attend and meet many ex-AFL stars.
It is hoped that Her Royal Highness, Mary The Crown Princess of Denmark, Countess of Monpezat, who was born and raised in Tasmania, Australia will attend the game to support the young Australians.
About AFL Europe’s junior program – it provides boys and girls with a fun and safe Australian Football experience that serves as an introduction to a lifetime of involvement in the game.
The program is not just about introducing children to Australian Football – it activates and develops within each child the desire for a healthy lifestyle and an association with this great game.
This is achieved through activities and programs for individuals, small groups and teams, and aims to assist development of personal and social skills.
If you are interested in starting up AFL at your school please get in touch with the Danish Australian Football League at email@example.com
Europeans playing in the match:
Thore Lauritzen – Denmark
Bjarke Lauritzen – Denmark
Nicolai Secher – Denmark
Joakim Secher – Denmark
Joost Van Der Hulst – Holland
Johan Lantz – Sweden
Troels Ottesen – Denmark
Martin Hinchey – England
Natis Johansson – Sweden
Kevin McSorley – Ireland
Benny McDevitt – Ireland
Matthew Kilheeny – England
Chris Martensson – Sweden
Mikkel Kjoege – Denmark
Victor Petersen – Denmark
Nicolo Di Giorgio – Italy
Andy Smith – Scotland
In Europe’s biggest breakthrough yet the Greater Western Sydney Giants have offered an international scholarship to young Danish AFL player Aksel Bang, who will visit Sydney to train and play with the Giants this year.
The 21 year-old has just started six months national service with the Danish army in Afghanistan and will travel to Sydney during his scheduled break in April/May. After visiting Australia and seeing his first match 2 years ago he now plays for the Aalborg Kangaroos and Danish Vikings and was the leading player in the 2012 Euro Cup in Edinburgh. Seen and a tough and explosive midfielder in the European ranks he is very excited to continue his football education with the Giants.
Giants Chief Executive David Matthews said it was a great opportunity further develop talent from overseas. He said Bang would train with the club and also play in the GWS Giants in the NEAFL.
“AFL Europe has a done a lot of work building the code across the continent and we think Aksel is deserving of an opportunity to further his skills and education in the game,” Matthews said.
Head Coach Kevin Sheedy said he was delighted to bring a player from Denmark to the Giants. The club has formed several partnerships in Europe including the South East London Giants, the North Leinster Giants (Ireland), the Zaprude Giants (Croatia) and the Skåne Giants (Sweden).
“We have an obligation to invest in talented players wherever they may be around the world if we want to truly develop our game internationally,” Sheedy said.
“As someone who did national service himself, I look forward to learning more about Aksel and his experience in Afghanistan. I am sure our players will as well and he will learn a lot from spending time at an AFL club.”
General Manager of AFL Europe Ben MacCormack thanked the Giants for giving Bang an opportunity to develop his game at an elite level in Australia.
“He has come a long way in a short space of the time in our game and no doubt in years to come there will be more players like him heading to Australia to chase their dream of becoming an AFL players,” MacCormack said.
“This is an amazing opportunity for one of our best European talents. Aksel has learnt the game in Denmark and been involved in our Talent Programs in the last two years. We are very thankful to GWS Giants and in particular international visionaries Kevin Sheedy and David Mathews for supporting our efforts in highlighting the talent that exists in Europe. No doubt future years will see many more Aksel Bang’s heading to Australia chasing the dream of becoming an AFL footballer” MacCormack continued.
Aksel’s excitement at the announcement couldn’t be hidden. “This opportunity means a lot to me! It’s a dream come true for me. It’s not only a great opportunity for me to become a better footy player but also a great chance to make the Australians realise that footy is growing in Europe and we are developing some great players far away from Australia under some hard conditions because the sport isn’t very big over here yet. But because it’s a great game and people over here love it so much we have a great training culture and improve our skills every year. It’s a great honor for me to go down to Australia and represent Danish and European footy”.
The AFL’s investment in our region and the touring of the AIS-AFL Academy has made it possible for Aksel to be exposed to a high quality talent program and his progress has been outstanding. The Commission and I wish him all the best on this trailblazing journey with the GWS Giants” MacCormack concluded.
In the end the scoreline might have flattered the European Islanders team, but there was no question of whether they merited their win on saturday at the Kia Oval. The final score of 11.11(77) to 2.3(5) was made to look far more impressive by four final quarter goals as prior to this the only point the team in white had as many goals as behinds was when Ryan McLoskey scored their first goal.
It took both sides some time to settle and get used to new teammates but once they did, the intensity of the contests was fantastic. The Islands team was well on top for the first half, but in the second the continent dominated for long stages without being able to get goals on the scoreboard. In the end both of their goals came in the third quarter from Tomislav Cvetko and Gregoire Patacq. The Islanders remaining goals were scored by James Flavin 2, Kevin McSorley 1, Kevin O’ Brien 1 (Goal of the day), Andy Smyth 1, Luke Booth 1, Levi Fernandez 1, Matt Kilheeny 1, David Saunders 1 and Gerard Walls 1.
At the post match function best on ground awards were given to Troels Ottesen for the Continental team and Gerard Walls for the victorious Islanders team, with a tickets donated for next year’s grand final by the AFL and by Event Planning Group.
After only 6 weeks in the job I have had the pleasure of watching more football played with true passion than ever before in my life. What a baptism to the role was the Euro Cup in Edinburgh! This was surely one of my most enjoyable days of sport ever and a personal highlight for me was the sheer passion amongst the playing group and also the volunteers. Forever etched in my mind was the Denmark and Croatia game that reminded me of what passion was all about, a couple of points saw the Croats eliminated and the pain was evident. They will surely be a powerhouse of the future under the stewardship of their new coach Ciaran O’Hara.
To say I am looking forward to working with all of you is an understatement. I believe we have both the people and the resources to build on that outstanding foundation laid down by the outgoing Chairman Gerard Murphy and Commissioner Sally Capp. Can I pay special tribute to Gerard who we all agree is a remarkable individual and has worked tirelessly to ensure we are “United, Structured and Respectful”, what an amazing legacy he has left and I hope to repay his confidence by giving my energy and effort to carrying on and building on this legacy.
I look forward this weekend to reacquainting myself with many of you at the European Challenge match at the Kia Oval, we expect a really strong crowd to see these two elite level teams fight it out for the bragging rights to Europe. I expect this to be the beginning of an annual game which will assist us in raising the profile of the game in Europe and supporting our plan to increase player participation throughout Europe.
Chairman, AFL Europe
Following the success of our live audio transmissions at the EuroCup in Edinburgh, AFL Europe’s very own internet radio station will be back up on air again this saturday from the Kia Oval. Coverage of our game between Europe’s Islands and the Continental team will begin at 13.05 GMT(14.05 CET). Check back to afleurope.org or our facebook page for details.
The teams for next saturday’s curtain raiser at the Kia Oval have been finalised. As anticipated a number of players have had to withdraw due to study, work or injury, but that has hardly diminished the quality of the teams with well established players who were unlucky to miss out called up in their place. The team’s contesting the JLT Group All Star Game are as follows.
JLT Group has come on board to sponsor the All-Stars curtain raiser match prior to the AFL European Challenge. We are proud to announce the following players have been selected to represent either the Islands team or Continent team.
Head Coach – Shaun McElhone – Ireland
Asst Coach – Pall Finsson – Iceland
1. Luke Booth – England
2. Ryan McCloskey – Ireland
3. Gerard Walls – Ireland
4. James Flavin – Ireland
5. Matt Kilheeny – England
6. Liam Corbett – Wales
7. Alasdair Lindop – Scotland
8. Kevin O’ Brien – Ireland
9. Eoin O Suileabhain – Ireland
10. Levi Fernandez – England
11. Andy Smith – Scotland
12. Ian Mitchell – England
13. Leifur Bjarnason – Iceland
14. Pall Finnsson – Iceland
15. David Lally – Ireland
16. David Saunders – Wales
17. Tom Exton – Scotland
18. Kevin McSorley – Ireland
19. John O’ Regan – Ireland
21. Sean Walton – England
23. Martyn Hinchey – England
35. Sam Brunton – England
Head Coach – Daniel McClaer – Sweden
Asst Coach – Nicola Giampaolo
1. Zvonimir Murkovic – Croatia
2. Wilfried Houvion – France
3. Joost Van Der Hulst – The Netherlands
4. Johan Lantz – Sweden
5. Jakob Jung – Germany
6. Tom Browne – Finland
7. Joe Durling – The Netherlands
8. Rene Damborg – Norway
9. Jonas Nielsen – Denmark
10. Giovanni Alloisio – Italy
11. Niccolo Di Giorgi – Italy
12. Fillippo Alloisio – Italy
13. Josip Kravar – Croatia
14. Chris Martensson – Sweden
17. Troels Ottesen – Denmark
18. Aksel Bang – Denmark
19. Matthias Klusermann – Germany
20. Alban Schieber – France
21. Natis Johansson – Sweden
23. Gregoire Patacq – France
24. Tommaso Arnulfo – Italy
55. Tomislav Cvetko – Croatia
Young Danish star Mikkel Kjoege is currently on his way to Australia to play for the World XVIII in the National Championships from the 4th – 14th July. Mikkel was identified through the fantastic junior development program in Denmark that has been leading the way in producing young European talent. His inclusion in the recent European Legion squad that played against the touring AIS AFL Academy was another major step in his development and he sure impressed coaches Tadhg Kennelly and Peter Schwab with his athletic wares. Although slight of frame this lad can really explode with pace and has an incredible vertical leap which is sure to impress during the carnival.
AFL Europe would like to wish Mikkel all the best on his adventure and will be posting a daily diary from Mikkel to show what it is like in the elite talent programs within Australia. Hopefully many more Europeans can follow this path and continue to put their names in front of AFL club recruiters. Maybe a European developed footballer being listed at an AFL club is not that far away…