Posts

EC16 Team Preview – GB Swans

AFL Europe Championships Team Preview – GB Swans

Every three years the AFL Europe Championships take place for teams to assert their dominance and claim bragging rights against their European counterparts, as well as gain valuable 18-a-side match practice in the lead up to the International Cup the following year.

In the lead up to this year’s AFL Europe Championships in London we’ll be focusing on each team and previewing their chances of taking out the top prize.

In the first of our women’s team previews we are getting to know the GB Swans a bit better.

What’s happened since International Cup 2014?

The GB Swans were established earlier this year by two England Vixens players who wanted the opportunity to play in tournaments alongside the GB Bulldogs (men’s team), including the European Championships and the International Cup. Since the formation of the team, the GB Swans have attended two events, the Champions League in Amsterdam and the AFL London Preseason Cup in Peckham. In what couldn’t have been a better start for the team, they won both tournaments, making a name for themselves as a team to beat. Charlotte Eales and Lisa Wilson, who founded the team, have been working hard to schedule selection days, prepare the team for the upcoming tournament, arrange kits and are working hard to bring in sponsorship. The management team have hugely been helped out by Jason Hill, Team Manager for the GB Bulldogs.

 

Who’s in for AFL Europe Championships in 2016?

The GB Swans are lucky to have 3 excellent coaches; Garth Nevin as Head Coach and Lauren Spark & Ian Mitchell as Assistant Coaches who bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the team. On announcement of the GB Swans forming a few months ago, the Swans received nearly 50 registrations of interest from girls across the country. After two selection days in Birmingham and Glasgow, a squad of 26 was selected for the European Championships. The girls come from a number of different teams representing England, Scotland and Wales. Unfortunately, we are yet to have a Northern Ireland girl register, but we hope to get them engaged soon! Clubs that are represented by the GB Swans are: Glasgow Sharks, Wimbledon Hawks, University of Birmingham, Greater Glasgow Giants, Wandsworth Demons, South East London Giants and North London Lions.

 

AFL Europe Championships focus 

The two selection days we had in Birmingham and Glasgow were doubled up as training camps to give the coaches an idea of the skill and fitness level of the girls in order to give feedback to aid improvement before the tournament. Alongside these, many of the players selected for the EC16 team played in the AFL London Preseason Cup back in April. Many of the girls have played together before for the England Vixens and Scottish Sirens, or within their clubs, however this will be the first time for many of the girls playing together.

With many of the girls coming from the AFL London league, there is a wealth of 18 aside experience which will be one of our strengths. However, fitness is always an issue when playing on an Oval as large as the one at Motspur Park. The girls will be looking to neaten up their skills, clean hands and kicks whilst ensuring constant pressure on and off the ball.

 

Who has the X-Factor?

Sisters Alex and Danni Saulter have had a bout of injury this season with the latter being out all season with a fractured elbow, sustained in the AFL London Preseason Cup. With both girls nearly back at full fitness they will be a force to be reckoned with; Alex in the half-back line and Danni strong in the midfield. They will both be hoping to replicate their fantastic performances in the 2015 Euro Cup where they both played for the England Vixens who took out the title.

One of our youngest, Chloe Hall, recently moved from playing at the University of Birmingham to the South East London Giants. She has rapidly adapted to the 18 aside format and her knowledge, skill and commitment to the game has been outstanding. She will be one to watch at this tournament and in the future for GB Swans. She also stands out as she has a tomato blush as she exerts herself into the contest. A real leader and hard ball getter!

 

Coaches thoughts – Garth Nevin 

“I’m not going to lie, I have set high expectations. I believe the talent we have in our team we should push very hard for the No 1 European spot. I hope that the girls send a message to the other countries competing in the International cup in 2017. We mean business. Another aim is to open the doors for the upcoming inaugural year of Women’s AFL in Australia for all GB women. The commitment these women have shown inspires me to pass on every bit of AFL knowledge I have. Whatever the result, I will be extremely proud of these ladies and honoured to be the first ever coach of the GB Swans.”

 

Squad

  1. Beth Bailey
  2. Carolyn Baker (Glasgow Sharks)
  3. Jen Bennett (Wimbledon Hawks)
  4. Freya Blount (University of Birmingham)
  5. Lea Cobham (North London Lions)
  6. Louise Darby (Wimbledon Hawks)
  7. Charlie Eales (Wimbledon Hawks)
  8. Chloe Hall (University of Birmingham)
  9. Stacey Hughes (Glasgow Sharks)
  10. Kirsty Gray (Greater Glasgow Giants)
  11. Rose Lewis (Wandsworth Demons)
  12. Laura Mackay (University of Birmingham)
  13. Jess Milford (Wimbledon Hawks)
  14. Sophie Morris (Wolverhampton Wolverines)
  15. Rania Ramadan (North London Lions)
  16. Zoe Rowe (Greater Glasgow Giants)
  17. Alex Saulter (North London Lions)
  18. Danni Saulter (North London Lions)
  19. Caroline Sellar (Glasgow Sharks)
  20. Louise Smith (Glasgow Sharks)
  21. Ellie Sutherland (Glasgow Sharks)
  22. Lynsey Torrance (Glasgow Sharks)
  23. Laura Turner (North London Lions)
  24. Lisa Wilson (Wimbledon Hawks)
  25. Lucy Jones
  26. Laura Park (Greater Glasgow Giants)

 

 

Around the Grounds

AFL Europe Championships only 5 days away

The much anticipated triennial AFL Europe Championships kick off this Sunday with the men’s first game day. All matches are taking place at Motspur Park and involve Great Britain, Ireland, Germany, Sweden and the European Crusaders. The men’s tournament runs from Sunday the 14th to Saturday the 20th with the women taking the field from Thursday the 18th until the Saturday.

For more information, click on the link below.

5 days

http://afleurope.org/events-media/events/2016-afl-europe-championships/

An All-Glasgow showdown set for SARFL Grand Final

The Glasgow Sharks have sealed their place in the Scottish AFL Grand Final with a nail-biting preliminary final win against the Edinburgh Bloods. With the scores tied deep into the 4th quarter the Sharks eventually ran out 11 point winners in a thriller at Linlithgow Park. This win ends a recent run of dominance from the Bloods in the Scottish AFL league and gives the Sharks one up on their old foes.

Presidents from both clubs had their say on the weekends results:

Bloods President, Craig Stevens

“It was a hard fought, high quality match. We’ve unfortunately come out on the wrong end of the result. We wish the Sharks and the Giants all the best next week in the big one.”

Sharks President John McIntyre

“Great contest and a good result from our club today. Both sides put their all in today and it was one of the best matches to be involved in. The Bloods came at us hard in the last quarter but we withstood the pressure. Off to the Grand Final to play another quality side in an all Glasgow final next week!”

The Grand Final will now be an all-Glasgow showdown between the Sharks and the Greater Glasgow Giants at the same venue as the prelim. The stage is set for a great finish to the SARFL season next Saturday.

Edinburgh BloodsGlasgow Sharks

AFL Sweden back in action

This weekend saw the Stockholm League kick back into action after their mid-season break. The Sodermalm Blues had their first loss of season 2016 following a 10-point defeat at the hands of the Norrtalje Dockers. The Blues a notoriously slow starters following summer breaks so they won’t be too concerned about this result despite finals being just around the corner.

Matt Schulte kicked a cool 7 goals for the Dockers while Johan Dalberg got himself a handful of goals for the Blues.

Final score: 13.6. 84 to 11.8.74

 

Leeside Lions get up over the Belfast Redbacks in ARFLI Grand Final

The culmination of the Irish Aussie rules season took place over the weekend with the Leeside Lions convincingly beating the Belfast Redbacks at Mardyke Arena in Cork.

The Lions last played in an ARFLI grand final in 2011 and broke the strangled-hold the Redbacks and the South Dublin Swans have had on the competition in recent years with their performance at the weekend.

They lead at every change to finish the big one in a canter with the scoreboard reading 16.8. 104 to 7.10.52.

Best on ground honours went to Matt Moore with a crucial 7 goals to his name for the day.

Leeside 2 Leeside

Italy confirms their place at Euro 2016

The Italian national team will make their long awaited return to the international arena at Octobers Euro Cup in Lisbon. The Italian’s have been on hiatus for the past few years but are now back on track to make their mark on AFL in Europe.

Massive congratulations on all involved in getting the side ready for this year’s tournament.

The squad is as follows:

  1. Giovanni ALLOISIO
  2. Luigi ARNULFO
  3. Tommaso ARNULFO
  4. Federico BERNASCONI
  5. Filippo BOLOGNESE
  6. Jacopo CARBONCINI
  7. Denis CONTE
  8. Thomas DIANA
  9. Niccolò DE GIORGI
  10. Marco DEL GAIZO
  11. Daniele GENNARA
  12. Andrea LORENZI
  13. Jacopo NOSARI
  14. Bruno NUGNES
  15. Mattia SACCHI
  16. Christian TIRANTI

HEAD COACH Armando COLOMBO

ASS. COACH Matthew HEWITT

Wildcats, Hawks and a couple of Demons taste success in AFL London Grand Finals

The final day of season 2016 for AFL London took place at the weekend under blue skies and a beaming sun.

The day started off bright and early with the South London Demons controlling the Social division decider from start to finish to claim back-to-back premierships against a courageous Reading Roos. Demons midfielder, Brett Hoare was awarded ‘best on ground’ honours for his tireless work through the middle of the ground. The final scorecard read 8.10. 58 to 3.2. 20.Demons 1

The Conference division pitted the Clapham Demons against the Shepherds Bush Raiders who were attempting to win their 7th straight premiership. In a see-sawing affair the Demons jumped out to a 10-point lead with 9 minutes on the clock in the fourth. They eventually held out for a thrilling 3-point victory in what turned out to be the match of the day. High-flying Brazilian winger, Ricci Leumann of the Demons became the first non-Australian to be crowned ‘best on ground’ in an AFL London Grand Final as he repeatedly provided the crucial link between the backs and forwards for the Clapham side. The final score in this match was 8.2. 50 to 7.5. 47.

Demons

A first-time premier was set to be named in the Women’s division and it was the Wimbledon Hawks who were crowned champions in a demolition of the North London Lions. The girls from the Hawks were unstoppable from the first bounce and finished their perfect season in style holding their opponents scoreless. The Lions should hold their heads high after fighting valiantly all day in front of a large crowd of supporters. Lauren Sparks of the Hawks finished as ‘best on ground’ in a clinical display through the midfield. Final score reading 10.5. 65 to 0.0. 0.

Hawks 1

The final game of the day was the much anticipated Premiership division decider between arch rivals the West London Wildcats and the Wandsworth Demons. Unfortunately, the game didn’t live up to its hype as the Wildcats controlled the tempo of the match and never gave the Demons a sniff. The boys from the West proved too fast and skilful for their opponents whose ill-discipline and turnovers at crucial moments proved costly. The Wildcats were best served by midfielders Todd Pfeiffer and Andy Challis, but it was Captain and Full-back, Jared Risol, who deservedly claimed ‘best on ground’ honours for his role in constantly repelling Demons forward entries and launching his side onto the offensive. The final scorecard reading 14.10. 94 to 7.1. 43.

Wildcats

 

 

 

Match of the Round

Match of the Round 6/8/16

ARFLI Grand Final – Leeside Lions v Belfast Redbacks

Mardyke Arena, Cork plays host to two of the fiercest rivals in Irish Aussie rules. The Leeside Lions take on the Belfast Redbacks in tomorrow’s Grand Final blockbuster with the Lions playing in their first Grand Final since 2011. The Redbacks are ‘big dance’ specialists, having qualified for their fifth consecutive ARFLI Grand Final.

This past year has been a big one for the ARFLI as a focus on reformation of the structures of the league took to the forefront. The establishment of ‘carnival footy’ has been the major structural change to the league. This saw carnivals held in the home city of each of the four competing league teams with Galway, Cork, Belfast and Dublin hosting carnivals throughout the season.

The Leeside Lions were the first side to lock in their place for the Grand Final having done so on the back of a ‘clean sweep’ – winning 9 from 9 games, a first in Irish League history. The Lions squad has been boosted this year by the large number of players from the local university team, the UCC Bombers. Being the first to qualify gives the Lions a much deserved home advantage which could prove pivotal to the outcome of this game.

The boys from Belfast will be a formidable opponent and could shatter the Lions hopes of a perfect season. They’ve qualified for their fifth straight Grand Final and the experience of playing on that first Saturday in August gives them a massive advantage if the game goes down to the wire. They also have the largest proportion of players in the Irish Warriors squad contesting the AFL Europe Championships the following week so that’s not to be underestimated.

Will the ARFLI be crowning a new champion on Saturday in the form of the youthful Leeside Lions or will it be the experienced and battle-hardened Belfast Redbacks. This one is set to be a ‘corker’ and isn’t to be missed. With the ball up set for 3pm get down to Mardyke Arena for the culmination of the 2016 ARFLI season.

Coach’s thoughts – Leeside Lions, Chris O’Brien

“The game will be won by playing our fast, precise style of footy. Players to watch are our Aussie gun, Matty Moore, and experienced players like Eoin Sull, Ian Sull and Cian Quigley that have been here before with the Lions and the national team on many occasions.

A younger crop of guys who have experience players with the Irish Warriors in various tournaments over the last couple of years, most notably, Muiris Bartley and Conor O’Halloran in IC14. We also have a good crop of youth and experience heading to London representing the national team in a couple of weeks’ time for the AFL Europe Championships.

The feeder club, UCC Bombers, have given the Lions a boost this year not only with players but an exuberance for the game and a sense of freshness to the squad that will hopefully reap benefits in the Grand Final against a tough Redbacks team.

We wouldn’t be where we are without the help of Tadgh from our sponsor, Blockagebusters, his generous contribution has allowed us to book training fields, help with insurance and physio bills, especially in the lead up to the final”

 

EC16 Team Preview – German Eagles

AFL Europe Championships Team Preview – German Eagles

Every three years the AFL Europe Championships take place for teams to assert their dominance and claim bragging rights against their European counterparts as well as gain valuable 18-a-side match practice in the lead up to the International Cup the following year.

In the lead up to this year’s AFL Europe Championships in London we’ll be focusing on each team and previewing their chances of taking out the top prize.

The next team preview is of the German Eagles. They’ll be raring to go in the 18-a-side tournament especially after claiming the Bowl at last year’s Euro Cup.

How have the German Eagles been going since Euro Cup 2015?

The Eagles have been slowly building a group of passionate, focused and tough footballers over the past 10 years, as the sport grows along with it in Germany.

The Eagles finished Euro Cup 2015 in Umag, Croatia as winners of the Bowl. This highlighted the growth and development in Germany.

At Euro Cup 2015 a new management team was introduced, they continued to work on the principle of national team growth, whilst adding in a new intensity to the group.

Who’s in for the AFL Europe Championships in 2016?

Mark Woods will continue coaching the Eagles into the Championships in 2016. Woods is an Australian who currently plays in the AFL Germany competition with the Munich Kangaroos. His in-depth knowledge of the local German players will be invaluable come August. He brings with him a wealth of experience and knowledge but more importantly has a passion to develop the game outside of Australia.

A full squad will be on the plane to London for the August tournament. The list will be very new and have many fresh faces. With their usual captain and half a dozen first 18 players missing from the squad this could prove a difficult tournament. With experience lacking there is a chance to blood some new players which can only strengthen the Eagles in the long-term.

Pulling on the German jumper is always a great honour for the players and each player knows their roles to help the Eagles compete strongly.

The Eagles squad comprises players from all over Germany. Most AFL Germany clubs are represented with Hamburg, Cologne, Dusseldorf, Stuttgart, Freiberg, Frankfurt and Munich all providing players to the national squad. This squad will also include some players from England and the Netherlands.

Pre-Tournament Focus

The Eagles have met for a 2-day training camp during the mid-season AFL Germany break and proved a key lead up camp prior to the AFL Europe Champs.

The team is a mix of youth and experience and have established six team pillars they want to be renowned for in the competition. If all players stick to these team pillars they’ll be successful come August.

One key area of focus for the Germans in the lead up has been their ability to work hard without the ball in hand. They believe that this will be a key feature and highlight of their game style.

The Eagles are well-known for their team balance and drive. They are driven to do their country proud. They aren’t here to make up the numbers by any means and want to be the best team in Europe. They are lucky because their players are able to play in any position across the ground and are willing to put themselves on the line for their country.

However, their limited time together will prove challenging and the quicker they gel as a team the more dangerous they’ll become to their opposition.

Who has the X-Factors?

The Germans are strong across the park and are blessed with the ability to play their players in any position. A few names to keep an eye out for are big bodied midfielder/defender, Florian Naumann, who can take a strong mark overhead and hits very hard. Ruben Streicher is a raw talent who plays as a tall forward or ruckmen. He was named in the Euro Cup team of the tournament last year in Croatia and is only going to improve. Jakob Jung is one to watch for the opposition. He has all the attribute of a top-quality midfielder with his speed and skills, he’s also tough as nails so will be hard to stop in the Champs.

Players who have shown significant improvement for the Eagles are Jan Husken and Simon Assmus. Both will be hoping to continue their rapid develop and shake up competition.

The coach’s thoughts – Mark Woods?

“In Euro Cup 2015, Germany played their first matches under a new coaching style and set of team rules. The team had only come together two days before the cup. Yet when we played to the rules and stuck to our style, we played very well. We lost only one game for the day, against Ireland, and that by only a small margin, having been thrashed by them in previous years.

With this in mind, we are looking to continue to grow as a country squad. I will be most proud when we stick to the game plan and the team rules. We will play hard (and of course fair).

This being said, all of the players want to win. I want to win.”

Team List

  1. Florian Naumann
  2. Jonas Nebel
  3. Simon Assmus
  4. Martin Schuttoff
  5. Jakob Jung
  6. Jan Ostrawsky
  7. Johannes Mast
  8. Constantin Pixa
  9. Martin Krichler
  10. Markus Preib
  11. Martin Bauer
  12. Sebastian Esche
  13. Rob Macher
  14. Ruben Streicher
  15. Jan Husken
  16. Johannes Orlowski
  17. Sven Bonus
  18. Henrik van de Stay
  19. Jonas Jakobeit
  20. Matthias Schmitz
  21. Tobias Menzel
  22. Moritz Herthum
  23. Jascha Jung
  24. Karl Haigh
  25. Tristan Thormann
  26. Rob White
  27. Uli Schmoll
  28. Johannes Binninger
  29. Waldemar Schlundt
  30. Richard Meisenheimer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AFL Grand Final Lunch

 

AFL Europe and the South Australia Club are pleased to announce the 2nd Annual

AFL Grand Final Lunch

Friday, 30th September 2015
1pm start

Australia House
Strand | London | WC2B 4LA | Map

In association with the Adelaide Crows 

Special Guest: David Zaharakis of the Essendon Football Club and former premiership players from the Adelaide Crows.

The 2nd annual AFL Europe Grand Final Lunch will be taking place Friday 30th September 2016. In conjunction with the South Australia Club this fully ticketed corporate event provides a unique opportunity to connect the UK and Australian Business Communities.

After a very successful day in 2015, AFL Europe and the South Australia Club promise to deliver an even bigger and better event.

Tables are currently available to purchase for £1100 (+VAT) for a table of 10 or £899 (+VAT) for a table of 8. Tables are already selling fast so get in quick. All proceeds will be retained by AFL Europe to assist in the promotion and development of the game in Europe.

For table bookings or enquiries please contact Sarah Ongarello, Events Manager – AFL Europe, 07951 742 441 or sarah.ongarello@afleurope.org for all table bookings.

 

Tuesday Around the Grounds

Around the Grounds – 2/8/16

West Lothian Eagles ARFC start up in Scotland

AFL Scotland’s welcomes a new club to its ranks with the West Lothian Eagles taking flight. The Eagles are looking for new recruits and pushing for a side in the coming seasons. This is great news for Aussie rules in Scotland.

The Eagles have their next training session on Monday the 8th of August. Jump over to their Facebook page to keep up-to-date with all things Eagles.

https://www.facebook.com/wleaglesarfc/?fref=ts

 

Jacob Raiwalui…remember the name!

Jacob Raiwalui picked up his first Sherrin 3 months ago. Last weekend he was being put through his paces by AFL royalty, Tadgh Kennelly.

Jacob stands at 6’6 and resides in France where his father, Simon Raiwalui, a former Fijian Rugby star, now co-manages French rugby side, Stade Francais.

The skies the limit for Jacob and hopefully his passion for the oval ball continues grow because he develops his skills and knowledge of Aussie rules.

Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 18.42.12

 

ARFLI Grand Final set to be a ‘corker’

Mardyke Arena UCC, Cork plays host to the ARFLI Grand Final in 2016. The Leeside Lions will be playing in their first grand final since 2011 having not dropped a game in the regular season. The Lions come up against a formidable opponent in the Belfast Redbacks who are competing in their 5 straight grand final.

This match is set to be a thriller, with free entry for all patrons, a huge crowd is expected for the crowning of the new Irish champions. Jump onto their event page and spread the word.

Keep an eye out on the AFL Europe website and social media as we feature this match as our ‘Match of the Round’.

https://www.facebook.com/events/643829235769315/

 

Former Hawk does the rounds at AFL Europe clubs

Hawthorn Premiership player, Max Bailey, is doing the rounds throughout Europe by visiting a number of clubs following his 6-month stint in Tanzania as part of the Future Warriors Project.

Max’s first stop was a Thursday night training and fines session with an AFL London club before running a weekend training program in Graz, Austria. He’ll be in Munich and Amsterdam meeting the local clubs for the remainder of this week.

Follow the big man’s progress on his Instagram @maxintanzania2016 and #MaxyOnTour

Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 18.43.37

 

AFL London Grand Finals takes centre stage at Motspur Park

The culmination of the AFL London season is here. This Saturday 8 teams across 4 divisions will fight for the title of AFL London Premiers. The Wimbledon Hawks will again play hosts for the day at the picturesque Motspur Park. It’s set to be a great day both on and off the field with the festivities kicking off at 10:30am with the Social division and culminating at with the Premiership match starting at 4pm.

Schedule:

10:30am – Social Division – South London Demons v Reading Kangaroos

12:00pm – Conference Division – Clapham Demons v Shepherds Bush Raiders

2:00pm – Women’s Division – Wimbledon Hawks v North London Lions

3:30pm – Premiership Division – West London Wildcats v Wandsworth Demons

Keep an eye out on the AFL London Facebook page for match previews of every game in the lead up to the weekend.

https://www.facebook.com/AFLLondon/?fref=ts

 

 

 

AFL Europe Match of the Round

Match of the Round 30/7/16

DAFA 9s – Round Two | Sportpark De Eendracht, Amsterdam from 11:00

The DAFA 9s is the Dutch National 9-a-side footy competition, this year held solely in Amsterdam and is being contested by three teams, Amsterdam Devils (Black), Amsterdam Devils (White) and Den Haag Ooievaars.

Round One saw three very closely contested games with all matches finishing with seven points or less separating the teams at the final siren. Den Haag Ooievaars got the job done in Round One, walking away (or more accurately hobbling away) with two wins, with the White Devils beating the Black Devils to claim one win for the round. Both Amsterdam teams will be looking for revenge in Round Two, with the team top of the ladder after Round Two marching straight into the Grand Final on August 20.

This is the inaugural year of the DAFA 9s and each team is pushing hard to win their first flag and with the teams so evenly matched, we’re looking forward to another round of close and fiercely contested footy in Amsterdam.

Amsterdam Devils (Black)

The Amsterdam Devils (Black) team is headed by their Captain Bill Johnstone and Coach Rick Hocking. Playing in the famous Amsterdam Devils kit the Black Devils have a strong outfit, however due to a few key players missing a week or two due to holidays this could hamper their campaign, one of these players being the key ruckman Reinier who is missing Round Two and the Prelim Final. Will the Black Devils make it through and have the chance to make use of Reinier in the Grand Final, only time will tell.

Amsterdam Devils (White)

The Amsterdam Devils (White) team is headed by their Captain (and DAFA President) Michel van Eijk and Coach Zach O’Neil. Touted as the bookies favourites prior to Round One, the White Devils have arguably the strongest team on paper however were hampered in Round One with two key players not taking the field and their Coach only making the second game as he rushed to the ground straight from the airport, after a well-deserved vacation in Greece. The White Devils will be looking to put out a stronger side in Round Two and try and force their way to top spot on the ladder.

Den Haag Ooievaars

The Den Haag Ooievaars team is headed by their Captain Maurice Verbakel and Coach Neil Cooke. The Ooievaars were not really fancied prior to Round One with their Captain and Vice-Captain both missing and a couple of key players carrying injuries. The Ooievaars got some luck however with Dan Lewis making one last appearance as he strengthened a weakened Ooievaars outfit. This was a vital plus to the Ooievaars as they took their chances and managed to hold off both Amsterdam teams to take out top spot after Round One. With both Captian and Vice-Captain back for Round Two, the Ooievaars will be looking to cement their place at the top of the ladder and book a place in the Grand Final at the same time.

 

 

Tuesday Around the Grounds

Tuesday ‘Around the Grounds’ 26/7/16

Mozzies are Kings of the North

The Manchester Mozzies claimed the AFL Central North England Premiership at the weekend making it their third in a row. The Mozzies blew the game apart in the first quarter and held on for what turned out to be their 5th premiership in 7 years. The final scores reading 156 to 73.

DSC_0428

Congratulations must as well go the Tyne Tee Tigers for claiming the Plate Final against the Sheffield Thunder in a 9-point thriller. Final scores 99-90.

DSC_0378

 

AFL Iceland get Australian air time

The most northern league in Aussie Rules, AFL Iceland, received some amazing air time on the ABC in Australia recently. The short clip documented the AFL Iceland league based in Reykjavik and showed the growing passion and development of the game in one of the more obscure locations in the world. We’d love to see Iceland competing in our Euro Cup in Lisbon later this year.

Click on the link below to watch the full clip.

https://www.facebook.com/abcnews.au/videos/10155310999754988/

 

DAFA 9s kicks off in Amsterdam

Round 1 of the DAFA 9s was held at the weekend in beautiful conditions in Amsterdam. The 3 team, 9-a-side format was played out by the Den Haag Ooievaars, the Amsterdam Devils White, and the Amsterdam Devils Black.

The Amsterdam Devils White went in as favourites, however, finished the day with registering a win. The Ooievaars went through undefeated and the Amsterdam Devils Black had one win and one loss.

Each game went down to the wire with 2 matches coming down to 7 points and the other by 4 points displaying just how tight a competition the DAFA 9s will be this year.

DAFA LadderDAFA 9s

 

Finals fever hits Scotland

Its finals time in the Scottish Australian Rules Football League (SARFL) with the preliminary final between the Edinburgh Bloods and Glasgow Sharks determining who takes on the Greater Glasgow Giants in the Grand Final on the 13th of August.

The Bloods and Giants finished the ladder equal on 20 points with the Giants qualifying straight through to the grand final by having greater percentage. Any of the three sides remaining could come away with the Scottish title meaning we’ll be eagerly watching how it all unfolds over the coming weeks.

SARFL Ladder

 

Wildcats, Hawks and a couple of Demons go straight through to AFL London Grand Final

The weekend saw the first round of the AFL London final series take place over both Saturday and Sunday. The major semi-finals took place on the Saturday at Clapham Common with the winners earning a week off and a spot in the Grand Finals in two weeks’ time. The minor semi-finals were held down at Peckham Rye on the Sunday with the losers of those games finished their 2016 season in 4th place.

In the Social division the Wandsworth Demons won through to the Grand Final in convincing fashion over the Ealing Emus. The Reading Roos ended the Wimbledon Hawks campaign in the first of the Sunday games which sets up a big clash with the Emus next weekend in the Preliminary Final.

The Conference games saw the Wandsworth Demons hold on for victory against a face finishing Shepherd’s Bush Raiders to qualify for the big dance and the South East Giants got over a tough side in the North London Lions. The Giants will now play a sudden death game against the Raiders.

In the Women’s division the Wimbledon Hawks were dominant against North London stamping their authority in the Women’s competition. They’ll play the winners of the North London Lions and Wandsworth Demons who won through in a thriller against South East Giants.

The Premiership games were typically physical and tight affairs. The Wandsworth Demons put up a fight but went down to AFL London powerhouses, the West London Wildcats, who booked their place in another grand final. The Demons now face a notoriously crafty finals opponent in the North London Lions in next week’s preliminary final.

DSC_0535

 

EC16 Team Preview – Swedish Elks

AFL Europe Championships Team Preview – Swedish Elks

Every three years the AFL Europe Championships take place for teams to assert their dominance and claim bragging rights against their European counterparts as well as gain valuable 18-a-side match practice in the lead up to the International Cup the following year.

In the lead up to this year’s AFL Europe Championships in London we’ll be focusing on each team and previewing their chances of taking out the top prize.

What’s happened since the International Cup in 2014?

The Elks have remained relatively quiet since the International Cup in 2014. The team participated in the 2014 Euro Cup with mixed results. They also hosted the 2015 Nordic Challenge beating Norway and Denmark (for the very first time) to claim the title.

2016 has seen the Elks host regional training sessions as well as a combined session following the Swedish Cup tournament in Norrtalje in June this year.

Who’s in for the AFL Europe Championships?

Head coach Daniel McClaer resigned in 2015 and the board spent a lot of time finding a new coach before finally settling on Brett Petersen based in Malmo. Unfortunately, Brett will not be attending the Championships in August so the team will be coached by manager and AFL Sweden President, Ryan Tucker.

There are a few new faces in the team but the majority of players have played in the Elks squad for a number of years. They hope to mix the older generation with the youth coming through but finding the right balance will be key.

Players are spread all across the country with all but one active team not having a player represented. Sweden have also taken advantage of neighbouring countries not entering a team with players from Norway, Finland and Lithuania.

Pre-Tournament Focus?

The lead up to this tournament has not been perfect having only recently secured a new head coach the team has not received the desired amount of attention moving into the Championships. Unfortunately, combined training sessions and team meetings have not been able to happen as planned which puts the Elks behind the eight-ball in terms of preparation. In saying this, the group of players play with and against one another at club level week in, week out which provides a level of familiarity.

The biggest hurdle will be the adjustment of newer players to the 18-a-side format after playing at 9-a-side format for their respective clubs. The Elks are renowned for their fitness, determination and voice on the field which will more than make up for any other areas they may be lacking.

Who has the X-Factor?

You can never go past veteran Andy Svensson. The oldest player in the team seems to get younger when he plays footy. Having played since the early 2000s he is a valued member of the team. Andy was a member of the combined Denmark and Sweden side that took out the championships 20 years ago in 1996.

New Elks, Alex Olsson and Calle Wrang have proved in domestic footy that they can produce, whilst stalwarts Chris Martensson and Hampus Olsson will lead the team with bravado.

One of the most improved players is Buster Sund from Norrtalje. He was just 17 years old at International Cup in 2014 and gained valuably from that experience to become one of the most dominant players in the Stockholm league in the past two years.

Coach’s thoughts – Ryan Tucker

“For me this tournament will serve as a great learning tool for the players looking to play in IC17. A bunch of new guys have never played 18-a-side footy and I am excited to see what can happen when the game widens. I am happy with the team we have put together and I think we have some great strengths in our fitness and passion for the game. our size will also be a factor during the tournament which we can hopefully exploit. Even though we have a few new players to the team our experienced players have a number of years behind them which will be very useful in tight games.”

Team List

  1. Andreas Svensson (Helsingborg)
  2. Anton Tellström (Helsingborg)
  3. Jacob Lantz (Helsingborg)
  4. Hampus Olsson (Helsingborg)
  5. Jacob Nilsson (Helsingborg)
  6. Philip Nilsson (Helsingborg)
  7. Robin Nilsson (Helsingborg)
  8. Niklas Jonsson (Norrtälje)
  9. Martynas Alijosius (Norrtälje)
  10. Erik Lindqvist (Norrtälje)
  11. Gustav Svensson (Norrtälje)
  12. Buster Sund (Norrtälje)
  13. Tim Lindgren (Port Malmö)
  14. Tobias Gogu (Port Malmö)
  15. Tony Persson (Port Malmö)
  16. Jonas Lovén (Port Malmö)
  17. Christopher Mårtensson (Port Malmö)
  18. Jonas Birgén (Årsta)
  19. Mattis Kvarnström (Årsta)
  20. Oscar Magnusson (Solna)
  21. Pekka Tångström (Göteborg)
  22. Kaj Karlsson (Södermalm)

 

Player of the Week – Lewis Brackstone

AFL EUROPE PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Lewis Brackstone has been an integral part of the West London Wildcats almost perfect season. After conceding the first match of the Round to fierce rivals, the Wandsworth Demons the West London Wildcats have made it their mission to finish out the season undefeated.

Lewis has been named in the 2016 AFL Europe Championship squad for the Great Britain Bulldogs and has been playing the game for the last 12 years. Congratulations on your almost perfect season, Lewis we look forward to seeing you play at EC!

Name:

Lewis Brackstone

Club:

West London Wildcats

Nationality:

English

AFL Team you support:

Geelong- Persuaded by the old man

Favourite AFL Player:

Brad Wedgwood & Dan Prigmore

How did you find out about AFL?

I found out about AFL in my first year of secondary school, Carshalton Boys, with the school gaining Sports College status the school wanted to push its students to achieve more and try their hand at different sports, plus having a load of Aussie PE staff helped thus they added Aussie Rules into the school curriculum.

How long have you been playing for?

I’ve been playing for around 12 years, the first 4 were at my school, where I’d only see limited footy time. I’ve been playing at the Wildcats for 8 years now, joining when I was 15.

What is your memory of your first Aussie Rules game?

My first memory of AFL was playing in my first school match at Full Back, with my coach at the time Ex Wildcat Paul Avery awarding me captaincy. He told me that I would have rule over the back line and that he had full confidence and faith in me that I’d bring him home a win, of which I didn’t let him down.

Best AFL moment?

Without doubt my best AFL moment was being selected to play in the World XVIII to go out to Australia to participate in the u16s NAB challenge cup. Being coached and mentored by Michael O’Loughlin was a true honour.

Any other information, quirky stories or interesting thing about you?

Played with AFL hopeful Emmanuel Irra & current Swans defender Aliir Aliir during my time in the World XVIII. I’m an avid Game of Thrones watcher since 2011