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Australian Rules Football In Vietnam!

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Archive for May, 2009

Greg Armstrong meets YVMDFL post bushfires

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 30, 2009

Swan, Greg Armstrong and YVMDFL CEO, Stephen Walter, hold the two jumpers donated after the Bushfire Match against Bali; and the YVMDFL seniors

reported that the “deadly fire that burnt across the Kinglake ranges on Black Saturday was of such intensity that it would have been ‘impossible to suppress’, even 10 minutes after it began, the royal commission into the bushfires has heard.”

At the heart of Kinglake and Marysville sits the Yarra Valley Mountain District Football and Netball League (YVMDFL). On 27 – 28 March 2009. the Vietnam Swans and Bali Geckos jointly held a Bushfire Match and Fundraiser for the YVMDFL. At the fundraiser, we raised AUD4,517.

Last Saturday, 23 May, Vietnam Swan, Greg Armstrong, visited the hierarchy of the YVMDFL. Below is his email.

Meme and I made the journey to the home town of the Yarra Valley Mountain District Football League, Woori Yallock, to watch an Inter-league match between YVMFDL and Ballarine. The day was greeted with sunshine and a big crowd who came to support their teams.

Upon arrival we were greeted celebrity style at the gates by the YVMDFL’s CEO, Stephen Walter and their President, Graeme Tulpin. We were taken up to the members’ lounge situated above the club rooms and provided with complimentary food and drinks for the afternoon and a perfect position to watch a great afternoon of country footy.

On behalf of everyone in the YVMDFL who were affected by the bush fires, both Stephen and Graeme expressed their gratitude and thanked all the efforts by the Vietnam Swans and Bali Geckos in raising money for those affected. They will be sending a YVMDFL jumper over to Vietnam as a token gesture of their thanks.

The day was topped off by both the U18 and Senior team winning on the day.

The YVMDFL's U18's; YVMDFL President, Graeme Tulpin (VN Swans match day banner in background); and some of their silverware

Posted in Fundraiser | 5 Comments »

The Match Report – Swans V Bintangs

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 28, 2009

Matty Townsend writes the Report - exclusively for the Blog

Matty Townsend travelled to Hanoi from Saigon last weekend for the inaugural Kainey Cup between the Vietnam Swans and the Jakarta Bintangs. Below is his match report (and photos from match day are still coming…).

So here are the key facts up-front: the “Kan’t-Lose Kainey” Kup went to the Bintangs by 47 points. Jakarta key forward “Butcher” kicked 5, the Swans had mulitple goal kickers and the game was watched by a non-playing crowd of about 23, including children, dogs and Timekeeper Potsy.

But since the author was busy trying to avoid getting steamrolled by a former East Timor peacekeeper lovingly called “Fester” by his teammates, you won’t get a play-by-play here. Anyway, if you’re on the Swannies’ website, you want to know how the Swannies travelled… and so here’s the drum:

Some cameos from the old stagers pleased the cheer squad, none more so than Patty Griffith’s Bartlettesque antics in front of goal, the North cap flying off his head as sheer goal hunger propelled him forward. Active and antic, Patty befuddled and bedazzled a younger backline with his age and guile, worrying the ball loose for an opportunistic poke by Fabbo (something Fabbo’s made a trademark in both his football and his personal life, apparently). Trav never looked like he was moving quickly but seemed to have half a second more available to him than everyone else on the ground; Chris scored through effort and industry. And no-one tried that bush-league rubbish on either Phil or Joe.

Some real muscle came from the team’s prime-of-life brigade, with Grouchy Dave and Debilitating Fondness For Nicotine Dan forming a mobile and sadly-overworked defensive pairing. Derrin bustled around the forward line like a mid-career Billy Brownless, but as he kicked like a late-career Billy Birmingham, it was left to one of the Dans (Dan Kindness) to provide the crucial finishing and a dash of sang-froid.

The fairytale story came from the ringers, especially Nick and The Mick. Although DoCS were standing on the boundary ready to pounce with a writ of child endangerment, Li’il Nick sent them packing by dancing out of defence like the Lithgow Flash, at one stage backing himself to take two bounces and drill it halfway up the ground (maybe he should have been kicking out in the first term, as well). Gaelic Superstar Jimmy The Mick loved what he saw and tried it on himself, although he was probably a bit more Sean Wight than Marty Clarke as he tucked the ball under and took on seven Bintangs in the centre of the ground, learning too late that you’re actually allowed to tackle in Aussie Rules.

In another strong day for the ruck division, Ryan threw himself selflessly at every contest, even turning a Bintang half his size inside out in the final quarter as he arched his back and salsa-ed towards goal. But the hit-outs and the day belonged to the Swans BOG, Griz – who was playing in his farewell – who moved across the ground with speed and grace and gave the Swans’ onballers more first touches than they’ve had hot dinners. A towering mark over two better-placed Bintangs encapsulated the courage and skills of a majestic final go-around for the big-hearted ruckman, the only man on the ground to whisper quietly in Willy’s ear, “Remember, Caesar, thou art mortal”.

Willy wasn’t whispering at three-quarter time, though – he was roaring, and he sent the Swans blazing onto the track for a smashing last quarter. Champion Data’s computers would have blown a transistor if they’d been set the task of tracking the number of times the Swans onballers managed to get hold of the pill, and the drive and desire to pull it back to evens was evident in the camelia pink of Nick Shiell’s face, who ran like a train all day.

In fact, the midfielders showed some real dash throughout the game, and not just because Adam and Willy gave them the hurry-up: Micky J did his best to cut down the opposition tall timber and has the scars to show for it (but seriously, you should see the other guy – last seen saying something about codeine and the sponsor’s product). Vietnamese superstar, Phi used superior fitness and diabolical commitment to impose himself on the contest, and Dan Lucardie made sure to bring something onto the field that the Swannies bitterly lacked – talk.

Of course, if we were all such champions, how did the other side snatch it.

Dave "Flyer" Kainey - missed out on holding the Kainey Cup aloft in his Swans jumper

Four  goals in 4 minutes, an early lead, hard running from defense into attack by their middle men and a couple of sterling individual efforts: their ageless captain MJ never stopped once and put it down the throat of Dave “The Butcher” Edwards – who marked strong and kicked straight – a sickening number of times. Having been cut up in consecutive games by a skillful midfielder on short grounds, the Swans could always do with a nuggety tagger to come and earn his Jim Beam by running with the best midfielder on the other side and telling him intimate details learned about his mother… but then, that just wouldn’t be Asian footy.

And the man of the hour?

He helped establish both clubs, he played for both teams, he promoted the game, he pumped the attendances, he became a Bintang Official Legend, he drank the bourbon, he turned tears into laughter and sunshine into rain… and he still picked the bloody wrong side to play on. Dave “Flyer” Kainey, for all of the above and two handy stints on significantly taller opponents on Saturday, the footballers of Vietnam and Indonesia salute you. Congratulations to the man who taught us all that no matter who scores the most, we’re all winners in Asian football.

Posted in BOG, Farewell, Legend | 4 Comments »

Vote for the Swans’ Song

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 28, 2009

In the last two days, the Blog has posted two potential club songs to sing when we win our next match (see two previous postings below).

One song is sung to the tune of Santa’s Jingle Bells. The other is sung to the tune of Jimmy Barnes’ Khe Sanh.

Which song do you prefer? Do either have the potential to become the Vietnam Swans anthem? Vote below!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Vietnam Swans Club Song – 2nd proposal

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 27, 2009

Barnsie, Micky J, Anh Joe and Khe Sanh

Yesterday, we were spoilt with one proposed Swannies Club song. Today, Micky J and Anh Joe release, for the first time ever, their entry for a Club Song.

Micky J is responsible for the verse and Joe for the chorus – as well as picking Jimmy Barnes’ Khe Sanh soundtrack.

Micky J suggests that he and Joe teaming up is akin to a Lennon/McCartney type of hook up. That’s profound if it is true. Below is their offering.

(As per 1st verse of Khe Sanh)

We gave our hearts to the Swans in Vietnam
And our souls were sold at bia hoi
to the fast drinking man
Raw dog meat ‘n’ rice wine whisky
Taste better with the scent of victory
And there’s nothin’ like morning glory in our hands.

(As per last verse of Khe Sanh)

We played our best for the Swans from Vietnam
We played our best for the Swans from Vietnam
Other teams are really worried
We’re champions and we’re hungry
Bring on your best ‘gainst the Swans from Vietnam


Ya hearin’ me???

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Vietnam Swans Club Song – proposal!

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 26, 2009

"Sing to the tune of Jingle Bells"

While we’re waiting for the photos and match reports of last weekend’s cracker-jack Kainey Cup, we will play some soothing text music.

Peter R. Hancock (“Handon”), from Melbourne, has written to the Blog today with a proposed club song for us to sing the next time we win a match.

He suggests that it should be sung to the tune of “Jingle Bells”.

The lyrics are reproduced below with Peter R. Hancock’s kind permission:

Vietnam Swans
Vietnam Swans
Football all the way
Aussie Rules
We’re no fools
Watch us play the game

Keep on guard
Tackle hard
Spread our wings and fly
It’s no dream
We’re the team
Keep our spirits high

Vietnam Swans
Vietnam Swans
Don’t forget our name
Mark the ball

Build the score
Winning is our aim – Oi!

Tomorrow the Blog will feature another exclusive: a draft song written by Big Joe and MJ all the way… to the tune of Barnsie’s Khe Sanh.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Bintangs take silverware but give thanks

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 25, 2009

Jakarta Bintangs give thanks

MJ, coach of the , has returned to Jakarta with the Kainey Cup from the weekend’s footy match against the Vietnam Swans in Hanoi. This morning, he sent the email below to the Swans:


Was a cracker of a trip! You put on a top show. Everything went without a hitch. Must say though, my body is really paying for it today. Can barely walk.

Thanks to all Vietnam Swans involved! Will definitely talk it up to other teams around Asia to tour there as well.

Good luck with the continued development.

See you at the Champs if not beforehand.

Cheers, MJ

It was great fun hosting the Jakarta Bintangs. The Bintangs have now visited Vietnam twice even though we are still to get to Jakarta for the first time. Given the score now reads one apiece in our two encounters, expect the third to be a very keenly contested affair in Jak.

Honk yer horn if you love the footy.

Photos and match reports still coming…

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Bintangs win Kainey Cup

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 24, 2009

The inaugural Kainey Cup between the Vietnam Swans and the Jakarta Bintangs was won by the Bintangs, 96pts to 49pts.

Dave Kainey played for the Vietnam Swans but it wasn’t enough for us to win the Cup with his name on it.

It was absolutely awesome having Kainey fly in from Singapore for the event. Apart from Jakarta, the Bintangs had players come in from India and Melbourne (who was the brother of Andrew who played for the Swans against Thailand at My Dinh National Stadium, Hanoi, in 2005 – and booted 6). Teh Swannies had players from both Hanoi and Saigon. So, basically, we all flew in from everywhere to play in this match.

Hanoi really did host an awesome weekend. Special thanks to Hanoi President Potsy and Coach Willy for all their amazing work. Out at the match venue, UNIS, Dan Lucardie and Phi did a fantastic job to organise everything.

The Culi Cafe ensured people had food to eat and non alcoholic drinks (no alcohol at UNIS). SOS International ensured all the players had peace of mind knowing that medical attention was on standby if required. Jim Beam and the Swanettes Party Crew ensured there were plenty of refreshments at the pre match and after match functions.

Congratulations to the Jakarta Bintangs.

Match reports, wrap up and photos to follow.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

The Footy Update

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 22, 2009

The Kainey Cujp - tomorrow

Dear Swans and Supporters

The Kainey Cup

Tomorrow at 12 midday, the Vietnam Swans and Jakarta Bintangs will run out onto the field at the UN International School in Hanoi to play for the inaugural Kainey Cup.

It is a measure of the respect for Dave “Flyer” Kainey that both the Bintangs and the Swans have wanted the Cup named after him.

Dave started off his Asian Footy career with the Bintangs and was formally voted by them as a “Club Legend”. He had a major role in introducing and developing Auskick into the country which has now had 10,000 go through its program.  In 2003, Dave moved to Hanoi and was a lead organizer in shifting Aussie Rules from the couch and onto the paddock.

Since moving to Singapore in 2005, Dave has remained actively involved with both Clubs. For example, most recently he played for the Swans in our ANZAC Day match against Thailand in Kanchanaburi last month, he attends the Asian Champs with either (both) teams and he attends the Jakarta Bintangs AFL Grand Final Event. He even attends the Swans Annual Golf Classic in Melbourne on the 4th Day of the Boxing Day Test Match.

Dave will fly into Hanoi tonight for the weekend’s activities. The Jakarta Bintangs started arriving last night and were greeted by the Hanoi contingent with a Cyclo Pub Crawl through the Old Quarter! Tonight it’s JASPAS. Tomorrow afternoon is the match with Auskick at half time. Then it’s off to JAFA.

This will be the Vietnam Swans first match in Hanoi since 31 May last year when we played Singapore – in our new jumpers.

Loscam Sponsorship

In further fallout from the global financial crisis, as reported in yesterday’s Financial Review, Loscam has advised that it will not be able to renew its sponsorship with the Vietnam Swans. The Vietnam Swans thank Loscam for their valuable contribution over the past 12 months. The last 12 months has seen us: develop the new jumper, create the photo opportunity with Miss Australia in our new jumper, play in our second Asian Championships, put on a cracking match event for the time that the HMAS ANZAC ship came to Saigon, host our first ever AFL Grand Final Party in Saigon (in addition to our established event in Hanoi), host a Bushfire Match and Fundraiser for the victims of Australia’s Black Saturday Bushfires and play the ANZAC Day Match in Kanchanaburi, Thailand.

The Vietnam Swans acknowledge and thank again our ongoing sponsors – Linfox (which has just resigned as a jumper sponsor), Odyssey Resources (shorts), Crown Relocations (training singlets), Jim Beam (product), and Whitemint (in kind creative), SOS International (match day attendance by medical staff), Pest Free (goal posts, Saigon) and La Vie Water (product).

ANZAC Day speeches

A number of people have commented on the various speeches and articles that have been written on the ANZAC Day weekend in Thailand. Most of them are now on the Swans website at The list is detailed below.

Posted in Fundraiser, Legend | 2 Comments »

Beijing’s inaugural domestic comp!

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 21, 2009

Beijing to launch domestic comp

The following message has just been received from the regarding the launch of their inaugural domestic season involving three teams:

History will be made this Saturday, 23 May, at Xiaowuji when Beijing’s first ever domestic Aussie Rules competition kicks off. Three teams will compete over three big weekends for the inaugural BAFL Premiership Flag.

Thanks to our major sponsor Austcham Beijing, last Friday night at Austcham’s Kooka drinks saw a very successful launch of the BAFL, raising over RMB10,000 (USD1,459) for the naming rights of each team. This money will go a long way towards helping the continued development of Aussie Rules footy in China.

Congratulations to two new sponsors and the third individual who have won the naming rights. A relocation services company put the biggest bid of the night in for the red hot favourites, the Santa Fe Saints. Consulting firm, AZ China, won the rights for the Chaoyang Cats and Committee member (and Cats player) Grant Bell bought the Dongcheng Demons, much to the disgust of the Demons players.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Tomorrow night – Bintangs start arriving!

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 20, 2009

Willy and Charlie at last year's Grand Final Cyclo Parade in Hanoi. A Cyclo pub crawl has been organised for the Jakarta Bintangs tomorrow night

If you’ve ever wondered what happens on a big international footy trip, check out the seriously amazing schedule below that has been mapped out for the Jakarta Bintangs when they arrive in Hanoi tomorrow night. b-i-g weekend coming.

Thursday 21st

Jakarta Bintangs arrive No Bai airport, Hanoi

Airport pick up has been organized and to be delivered to Prince Hotel – 37 Luong Ngoc Quyen Str.

7 pm – 8pm      Meet for Drinks – Press Club – Coopers Happy Hour (optional eats).

8 pm                Cyclo tour – Jo Jo’s and other places. (Depending on weather)

Friday 22nd

Day – free time

7.00 – 10pm    Teams meet at JASPAS, 4th Flr, Hanoi Towers, 49 Hai Ba Trung Str. for Jim Beam Party.

8pm                    Presidents and Coaches meet

10.30pm          Free time or drinks at Relax 2 – 36 Quang Trung Str.

Saturday 23rd

Breakfast at Culi Café (40 Luong Ngoc Quyen Str.) – opposite Prince Hotel.

10.30am          32 seater bus leaves for United Nations International School (UNIS) – Ciputra.

11.00               Arrive at ground (please note photo I.D will be required on entry).

12.00               Game kick off.

12.45               Half time – Aus kick.

1.00 pm           2nd half begins.

2.00pm            Game finishes

2.05pm            Speeches, presentations etc.

2.30pm            Bus leaves for JAFA – Ciputra. (Please note Ciputra is a 5min walk from ground so no problems if you miss the bus).

2.30 pm           Drinks and BBQ at JAFA and AFL footy.

7.30 pm           Jo Jo’s Bar  – 23C   Hai Ba Trung.

8.30 pm           Drinks at Relax 2 – #36 Quang Trung

Sunday 24th

Breakfast at Culi Café… and it all starts again…

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Kainey’s coming…

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 19, 2009

Kainey and Colin Mitchell at the 2007 Asian Champs, BKK; Gus, Kainey, Micky J and Fabbo at Hellfire Pass, 2009

On Saturday, 23 May, we’re playing for the Kainey Cup in Hanoi.

During the week, Dave Kainey wrote to the Swans and Bintangs to say:

(The naming of the “Kainey Cup” is) a great honour and I am very proud to have my name associated with the match. I have even managed to organise to (fly from Singapore to) be there for the inaugural game too.

I am sure I will enjoy the weekend; to be a part of a game involving 2 very special football clubs will be an awesome experience.

Looking forward to catching up for a beer. Flyer

In the photo above, on the left, Dave “Flyer” Kainey is pictured in his Jakarta Bintangs outfit at the 2007 Asian Championships in Bangkok. Next to him is the Vietnam Swans’, Colin Mitchell who now lives in Tianjin, China. Colin had also toured with Kainey on the then Hanoi Swans first ever tour – to Malaysia in May 2005.

In the photo on the right, Kainey is pictured with Gus, Micky J and Fabbo at last month’s ANZAC Day Dawn Service at Hellfire Pass, Thailand.

"It didn't make sinse", said the Kiwi

In other news, the soccer match between Robbie Fowler’s North Queensland Furies and the Hoang Anh Gia Lai club in Saigon next weekend has been cancelled.

Anyway, what the hull were they thinking when they decided to go head-to-head with the Kainey Cup?

As a Kiwi was heard to remark, “It didn’t make sinse”.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

It’s the Kainey Cup!

Posted by Vietnam Swans on May 17, 2009

Match Day Banner for the Kainey Cup

Next weekend, on Saturday 23 May 2009, the Vietnam Swans and Jakarta Bintangs will play for the Inaugural Kainey Cup.

Dave Kainey has been a significant person for both clubs. Below are emails to Dave from both clubs.

From Vietnam Swans National President:

It’s with great pleasure that, on behalf of the Vietnam Swans and the Jakarta Bintangs, I confirm that on 23 May in Hanoi, the Vietnam Swans and the Jakarta Bintangs shall play for the inaugural Kainey Cup.

I will let Tim and Matt speak specifically about Jakarta but it must be a rarity for two teams to want to name the Cup after the same guy. It’s a measure of the impact you have had on both Clubs when you lived in our respective countries and the ongoing influence you have had since “retiring” to a third country.

For the Vietnam Swans, you played a key role in getting footy off the couch and onto the ground. You also ensured that footy would continue to grow and prosper long after your departure. The fact that you still attend matches and events of the Bintangs and the Swans – most recently for us 3 weeks ago in Kanchanaburi, is testament to your ongoing commitment to our clubs and to footy in the region.

The Dave Kainey Roast. Dave enjoys a nice beer from the boot of Matty Otto at his farewell at the Barracuda Bar, Hanoi, June 2005

Flyer, it will be a great honour to play for the Kainey Cup on 23 May 2009.

Congratulations – and thanks.

From Jakarta Bintangs’ President:

Well done mate. It’s great to see one of the true gentlemen of Asian footy recognised. Thanks for all the effort you put into Junior development in Indonesia and your help with the Bintangs over the years. You will be glad to know that we have about 10,000 kids now training for footy through our development program and we will be launching “AFL Indonesia” branding in June. It is through the efforts of you and Andi in the early years that has allowed us to get to this stage.

Best wishes mate and looking forward to catching up for a beer shortly.

Dave Kainey will fly to Hanoi from Singapore for the Kainey Cup next weekend.

Posted in Farewell | 1 Comment »


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