The upcoming 2017 AFL International Cup will have a distinctly ‘Southern’ flavour with several SFNL clubs set to host group matches during the two-week tournament.
On Saturday 12 August, Caulfield will play host to the blockbuster Men’s Division 1 clash between rivals Great Britain and Ireland at Koornang Park. The massive international match will kick-off at 12:30pm before Caulfield and Springvale Districts do battle in their Round 18 senior match at 2:30pm.
The Reserves will start at 10:30am, launching what promises to be a massive day of football at the Bear Cave.
Several current Bears players are also in line to represent their native Great Britain in this year’s International Cup, with Sean Walton, Alex ‘Mini’ Markham, Adam Coxsell and Luke Murchie all selected in the Bulldogs’ squad. Walton has also been named as one of Great Britain’s two Vice Captains.
Meanwhile, Lyndhurst’s Marriott Waters Reserve complex will also be the host venue for the Men’s Division 2 match between Sri Lanka and Croatia at 12:00pm on the same day. The Lightning’s senior clash with Ashwood will follow the International Cup match.
Lyndhurst has a long-running association with the Sri Lankan team through AFL Multicultural Ambassador Prabarth Fonseka and his brother Anurudda, who are close friends of club administrators Andrew King and Isaak Iliadis.
The Lightning’s Junior Coaching Co-ordinator, Enrico Misso, will also take the reins as coach of the Sri Lanka team for the tournament. Misso became the first person of Sri Lankan descent to play AFL/VFL football when he represented St Kilda in a match in 1985.
The Hallam Hawks will also host a Women’s International Cup match between Ireland and Papua New Guinea on Sunday 13 August. This fixture will commence at 2:00pm, with the Hallam women’s team to play their Round 13 clash with East Brighton as a curtain-raiser from 12:00pm.
Several other SFNL players will also don the colours of their countries of birth throughout the tournament. Counted among them will be Keysborough’s Jamie Pi, who will again represent China as both a player and Assistant Coach, while Black Rock star and native Californian Michael ‘Buddy’ Spohn has earned selection in the USA Revolution team.
The 2017 AFL International Cup, the sixth tournament to be held since its inception in 2002, will run between August 5-19 and will feature 18 men’s and eight women’s teams from countries across the globe.
For further details and full fixtures for the 2017 AFL International Cup, visit afl.com.au/internationalcup
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Caulfield Bear Sean Walton has been named Vice Captain of the Great Britain IC17 squad.[/caption]
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Black Rock's Buddy Spohn will line up for his native United States.[/caption]
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Keysborough's Jamie Pi will represent China as a playing assistant coach.[/caption]
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The Sri Lankan team train at Lyndhurst.[/caption]