Proposed match between All AFL Asia and Royal Australian Navy receives massive boost
Posted by Vietnam Swans on November 29, 2013
UPDATE: The Malaysian Warriors have just joined the Singapore Wombats, Hong Kong Dragons, Jakarta Bintangs and Vietnam Swans in supporting the idea of having a combined AFL Asia team playing a Royal Australian Navy team in 2014.]
AFL Asia and the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) have been in ongoing discussions regarding a combined Royal Australian Navy team taking on a combined AFL Asia team – a team of AFL Asia’s best – somewhere in Asia.
This week, the proposal received a massive boost when the President of the Singapore Wombats, Belly, declared that the Wombats could host the proposed match.
With a ground being offered, the Hong Kong Dragons, Jakarta Bintangs and Vietnam Swans all quickly said that they would be able to join the Singapore Wombats to field a representative AFL Asia team to take on the RAN. Other clubs are still to declare their level of interest.
Additionally, the RAN is keen to be involved with Auskick programs while on their tour. Accordingly, it has been proposed that the big match be scheduled on the same weekend that the Singapore Sharks host a massive Auskick Carnival for Auskickers around Asia.
Dates are still to be locked in due to a date for the Asian Champs, Asia’s biggest footy tournament, still to be confirmed (a date for the Champs was proposed for August 2014 in the Philippines. However, due to a clash with the International Cup in Australia, the organisers of the Champs have been requested to consider changing the date to October. That would then open up the possibility of a November fixture for the proposed mega blockbuster against the Navy).
Luke Mitchell of the Royal Australian Navy, replying to the exciting news coming out of Singapore during the week, said, “This is fantastic news! An update from this side of town, we have now approached several sponsors who are looking excited about jumping on board. While I can’t give a 110 per cent guarantee on funding and availability, it is really looking promising and gaining momentum.”
AFL Asia’s President, Phil Johns, thanked the Singapore Wombats for offering to host the event and, of course, the RAN for being so keen to be involved. He added that such a match, “if it becomes a reality – and we are now so much closer to that happening – will be a seminal moment in the development of AFL Asia and footy more generally in Asia. This is a huge opportunity for multiple parties on multiple levels.”