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Calling all nations for 2007 Arafura Games

  • Tuesday, October 17 2006 @ 11:30 am ACST
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General News

The Arafura Games, held every two years in Darwin, represents the only opportunity Aussie Rules footballers have to be a part of a large-scale multi-sport international sporting event. At the 2005 Arafura Games, over 3000 athletes from 32 nations competed in 30 sports, and from the 12 - 19 May 2007 it is set to happen all over again. In the past it has featured several international footy sides and games organisers are now encouraging Aussie Rules teams from across Asia Pacific and beyond to be part of the amazing atmosphere.

Interested parties should contact Mark Noonan at:

AFLNT PO Box AFLNT1 CASUARINA NT AUSTRALIA 0811

Phone: +61 8 8945 2224 Fax: +61 8 8945 0069

Email: mnoonan@aflnt.com.au; or by visiting the Arafura Games website at www.arafuragames.nt.gov.au.

The Arafura Games has a rich history with developing Aussie Rules. As reported on WFN, AFL in South Africa was largely born when North-West Province Officials were impressed by Aussie Rules at the Games in 1997, while in 2005, the Samurai's reached the Games Grand Final as part of their preparations for the 2005 International Cup. It has also been reported on WFN that PNG is interested in sending a national squad to the 2007 Games.

Keeping their national squads active in non-IC years is one of the big challenges facing developing Aussie Rules nations. Arafura Games organisers are hoping International Aussie Rules teams will see the Games as a chance to not only gain valuable match practice, but to come and be part of a truly unique and rewarding experience.

Unfortunately the future of Aussie Rules as a sport at the Games is in doubt, and so organisers are hoping a strong participation in 2007 can ensure Aussie Rules remains an Arafura Games fixture.