continues its series on footy in Asia. Today’s article, “Asian Footy future – call for peak Asian body” is by Brett Northey. An excerpt is below.
In the on the future of Australian football in Asia, we spoke with Darrell Egan (founder of the Donnguan Blues in China) about how has been engaging locals in the game and the way to replicate and sustain such a program. In today’s piece Darrell expands on his thoughts about developing an Asia-wide body to ensure the region stops being left behind in footy progress. Later we’ll talk to some of the other Asian clubs, including a separate proposal for a Southeast Asian league, and we hope to discuss with the AFL their vision for the region.
We put it to Darrell that he’d mentioned to us the concept of setting up a body or league for footy in Asia and possibly the Pacific. Are you thinking Asia-Pacific or just Asia? Did he see it as being a formal governing body for the game in Asia or just a forum for developing ideas and setting up matches?
“The first thing is we have to ask is… Where is Aussie rules going international? What fruits can bear from the hard pioneering work Australians have have done bringing the game to these countries?
“The direction needs to be more local engagement which in turn attracts large global sponsors to those countries as you are including their demographic. We have to make these global footy pioneering Australians or locals feel their hard work has counted for something and this has to be a well structured, well sponsored and supportive formal peak body to empower them on the ground.
“Also Asia demographically is a great place to kick off Australian Rules football in a formal international sense”.
“There maybe immediate engagement problems with an Asia Pacific peak body which will have a high locals content. However we have Asian countries which are attracting locals and we can put this peak body up to help foster brother club relationships in Australia and the engagement program I outlined. When the Asia body is running it may later engage the Pacific into one body.
“The first issue is local involvement.
“Currently in Asia we have Japan, East Timor, Laos, Indonesia, India, Borneo and our local Chinese players who are involved across some teams here to form representative teams with locals to be included in an Asia Australian football peak body.
“We can set a 16 locals out of a 22 player squad requirement for their national team to have a representative on the peak body. They would have to have at least 10 locals in their national team to be a member on the peak body and the peak body can assist in them reach the representative target.
“Once it has established a constitution, future directions and a competition structure this peak body can engage large sponsors to support their international clubs in their needs for travel for competitions.
“In regards to space Guangzhou has a great ground in the Guangzhou cricket stadium to host an Asian event. One thing I know from locals is the Chinese government are more likely to support a sport which has an international hosted in Guangzhou which would be an appropriate ground”.
The complete article
To read the rest of the article on World Footy News, .