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Demons take big crew to China

  • Sunday, October 10 2010 @ 09:00 pm ACDT
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Asia The Melbourne Football Club will embark on a 14-day tour of China, highlighted by The Kaspersky Cup Shanghai Showdown match between The Demons and the Brisbane Lions at Jiangwan Stadium on Sunday.

The Club will depart Melbourne on Sunday October 10 returning on Saturday 23. The touring party of 130 includes the full playing list, football department and all administration staff. This is believed to be the biggest ever overseas trip conducted by an AFL club. Melbourne’s key destinations include Moganshan, Shanghai, Beijing and Hong Kong.



The match will be sponsored by Kaspersky Lab, a major sponsor of the Melbourne Football Club. The company describes its relationship with the Demons as an “organic fit” with the club and the community.

Kasperksy Lab, a leading developer of secure content and threat management solutions, will partner the AFL for the first ever match in China when the Melbourne Football Club plays the Brisbane Lions for the inaugural Kaspersky Cup, AFL Shanghai Showdown.

To be played against the backdrop of the ongoing Shanghai Expo which has attracted more than 50 million visitors, the game is being promoted by the AFL as a “great opportunity to showcase Australia’s only indigenous game”.

The Kaspersky Cup will be played on October 17th at the KIC Jiangwan Stadium, Yangpu District, Shanghai, and shown live on several local and international television channels. The Shanghai match will coincide with the launch of a website for AFL fans in China (http://www.51afl.com) and the start of regular live television coverage of Australian games.

Kaspersky ranks third in Australia’s antivirus software market. In China, where Kaspersky has been in the top two antivirus providers since 2006, the game is an opportunity to deepen its commitment to the AFL and its relationship with the people of China. “The AFL is a wonderful tool for working with the Chinese community,” said Harry Cheung, Kaspersky Lab’s Managing Director for the Asia-Pacific region. The AFL is surrounded by passion, supporter devotion and excitement.”

“Kaspersky has a policy of engaging directly with the Chinese community and communities around the world,” Mr Cheung said. While the Shanghai game is the first in what will become the ongoing Kaspersky Cup competition, the AFL has been promoting the code amongst school age Chinese children for some time. “An AFL game is a unique and quintessentially Australian experience,” said AFL CEO, Andrew Demetriou. “The people of Shanghai may not fully understand the match but they are certain to be excited by it.”

“We are already promoting the game through our development program in schools in Shanghai and this game is a chance to engage and excite others. It represents an outstanding opportunity to improve the game’s international standing.” The Demons agree. “We are extremely excited about taking Australia’s indigenous game and its unique skills to Shanghai,” said CEO, Cameron Schwab. “It will be a fantastic cultural experience and a great opportunity to showcase our game in a new market.”

Australian football, which can trace its roots back to 1858, now claims nearly 53,000 players who are members of more than 270 clubs around the world. In Australia, it contributes A$3.4 billion annually to the national economy and has more than 733,000 registered players.

This year more than 6.5 million people attended AFL matches, making it the third most watched sporting competition in the world behind only the NFL and the German Bundesliga. As well as raising the profile of the game in China, the AFL believes that the Kaspersky Cup match in Shanghai will contribute to a better understanding of Australia amongst the Chinese people and help to improve Australia/China relations.

“The decision by the Great Sports Channel in Shanghai to carry the Kaspersky Cup and the agreement with the International Channel Shanghai which will see the regular broadcast of Australian matches is a tremendous breakthrough for us,” said Mr Demetriou.

“Kaspersky regards itself as a member of both the Australian and the Chinese communities and this game is an example of our commitment to both,” concluded Harry Cheung.

About Kaspersky Lab

Kaspersky Lab is the largest antivirus company in Europe. It delivers some of the world’s most immediate protection against IT security threats, including viruses, spyware, crimeware, hackers, phishing, and spam. The company is ranked among the world’s top four vendors of security solutions for endpoint users. Kaspersky Lab products provide superior detection rates and one of the industry’s fastest outbreak response times for home users, SMBs, large enterprises and the mobile computing environment. Kaspersky® technology is also used worldwide inside the products and services of the industry’s leading IT security solution providers. Learn more at www.kaspersky.com. For the latest on antivirus, anti-spyware, anti-spam and other IT security issues and trends, visit www.securelist.com.