Vietnam Swans

Australian Rules Football In Vietnam!

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Archive for the ‘Fundraiser’ Category

USD1,000 raised in Battle of the Codes Trivia Night, Hanoi

Posted by Vietnam Swans on March 23, 2012

Michael Johnston reviews last week’s Battle of the Codes Charity Fundraiser held in Hanoi which raised a total of $1,000 for two charities – Swim Vietnam and Little Tigers.

Faced with the sad news that JASPA’s Manager was unavailable due to illness on the night, 75 hardy souls decided to nonetheless press on with the Battle of the Codes Charity Fundraiser. Five Clubs were represented:

  1. The Hanoi Oi’s Netball Club
  2. The Dura Celts Gaelic Football Club
  3. The Hanoi Dragons Rugby Club
  4. The Hanoi Celts Gaelic Club
  5. The Vietnam Swans Australian Rules Football Club

The objective of the evening was to:

  1. Raise funds for ?
  2. Raise funds for ?
  3. Bringe together 4 of Ha Noi’s ball-sports codes?
  4. Have a good time? or
  5. All of the above?
  • * See Footnote No. 1.

Following a welcome from the Ha Noi Swans Prez, Dan Hopkins, and quick chats about the charities being supported by the evening, MC Simon took over the mic.

Mind-taxing rounds of daunting questions included:

  1. General Knowledge;
  2. Netball;
  3. Rugby;
  4. Australian Rules;
  5. Gaelic Football;
  6. Vietnamese Sport; or
  7. All of the above.
  • See Footnote No. 2

In between the rounds, a number of raffle prizes were distributed and auctions conducted.  A special big thanks has to go to the organisations that donated the prizes, including JASPA’s, Green Mango Restaurant, Pots’n Pans Restaurant and the Intercontinental Hotel Hanoi.

For such a broad spectrum of questions covering many continents, sports and events, there was one popular generic answer of “F…’ed if I know”.  However, this was not the correct answer and the eventual winning team, Skowronski’s Sausages, established an early lead and was never headed.

  • See Footnote No. 3

At the end of the questions, the adjoining-table teams of Celts and Dragons were tied for 2nd (who was copying whose answers?), so a time honoured Boat Race was held to decide who took home the valuable 2nd-place handshake from Prez, cDan.  In a close fought race, the team that won had:

  1. The only female Boat Race crew member?
  2. The only shaven head male crew member?
  3. No Irish accents?
  4. Oval balls (including (1) above)?
  5. All of the above?
  • See Footnote No. 4.

After a great evening, Swim Vietnam and Little Tigers Orphanage will each receive $500 towards their programmes. Anyone who wants to learn more about these wonderful organisations can contact them via their web sites:

  • Swim Vietnam –
  • Little Tigers –

Special thanks must go to the staff at JASPA’s who did a great job without Jamie to keep the food, drinks and energy coming all night.

Thanks also to our anonymous Question-Meister, Matt Townsend, who kept everyone scratching their heads for 3 hours.

  • Footnote No. 5


  • No. 1 = (5) All of the above.
  • No. 2 = (7) All of the above.
  • No. 3 = Protest Dismissed against winning team having more than 6 on their table: No provision in rules for maximum numbers on a team, and there is no guarantee that an extra embassy staff will raise the total IQ of a team.
  • No. 4  = (5) All of the above.
  • No. 5 = Protest Dismissed against Question-Meister for dubious round of rugby questions being NZ-centric rather than sports-focussed:  No Formal Agreement signed regarding strict question content, but QM will be under the microscope and BofTheC’s Management Committee may vet future offerings.


To view more photos of the evening taken by Michael Johnston, .

Posted in Fundraiser | Leave a Comment »

North Vs South, Hanoi, 31 March 2012

Posted by Vietnam Swans on March 14, 2012

Hanoi President, Dan Hopkins, arrives at the ground last year with the bamboo goal posts.

The ANZAC Friendship Match is on 21 April 2012 – that’s just 5 weeks away from Saturday.

As part of the build up for the Swannies’ biggest event of the year, we are pleased to announce that there will be an intra club match held between the North and the South in Hanoi on Saturday 31 March.

The last time we played a match in Hanoi with national representation was on 23 July of last year. And it was a mega hoot of a weekend.

31 March will be no exception!

Other Events:

  • Tomorrow night, 15 March: Battle of the Codes Trivia Charity Fundraiser, Hanoi
  • Saturday 17 March: Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day, Dananag
  • Saturday 17 March: Inaugural Combined Gaelic/Aussie Rules Football Match, Saigon
  • For other events, check out the Swannies’ 2012 Calendar (see tab at top of page)

Posted in Fundraiser | 3 Comments »

Where do we start this week??

Posted by Vietnam Swans on March 12, 2012

16 Vs 18. "That's the problem!" Fabbo at the post match formalities. Photo Joe Garrison.

National President, Phil Johns, gives another energetic update on all the big happenings around Vietnam with the Swannies.

Dear Swannies, Sponsors and Supporters

  • The Cambodian Cannonball Run
  • Hanoi – Battle of the Codes
  • Hoi An/Danang – Swing to Swim
  • Saigon – Gaelic Aussie Rules Football Match etc
  • Nha Trang – Auskick
  • Wotcha Binh Duong? Footy business as usual in the Binh
  • Memberships
  • Supercoach
  • Final thought

The Cambodian Cannonball Run

Sometimes, it’s a game of two halves and Saturday a week ago against Cambodia, it was a game of five quarters – with the first three being declared null and void. It was originally advised that each team would field 18 players. However, a week prior to the game, Cambodia advised yours truly that it would be reduced to 16. I failed to communicate that message to the coaching panel on the day which could possibly be described as a basic footy mistake. Meanwhile, all the holes in the layers of Swiss cheese lined up beautifully and we therefore entered the game playing 18. Just prior to the three quarter break, Cambodia discovered we had the two extra players. The Cambodian President proposed that we just continue the game – with 16 a side – as “we’re not playing for sheep stations”. The Swannies’ counter offer was to wipe the scores of both teams and play a new game of 2 x 15minute halves which we did and the Eagles won comfortably. It was a nguyen-nguyen result out of a poor situation.

There’s lots of reasons why the above happened. Collectively, they are the single reason why our preparation for the Club’s next international, the biggest of the season, the 2012 ANZAC Friendship Match on 21 April, will be razor sharp.

In Cambodia, we also awarded the Rick Trewavas Medal. However, the medal has now transformed from “Bloods Breed BOGs” to “Butter up Bloods” which translates to “Get up and have another crack”. Rick has done that with his fight with cancer and that’s exactly what Micky J did all day against Cambodia. Congratulations, MJ (see medal attached).

Hanoi – Battle of the Codes Quiz

Next Thursday, 15 March, the Vietnam Swans will co host the 2nd Annual Battle of the Codes Charity Fundraiser, together with the gaelic, netball and rugby clubs. Last year, collectively we raised $2,500. This year, all money raised will be donated to Swim Vietnam (swimming) and Little Tigers (orphans). Sponsored items for raffle/auction are welcomed.

Hoi An/Danang _ Swing to Swim

Next Saturday, 17 March, the 2nd Annual Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day and Evening will be held at Montgomerie Links, Danang. $25,000 was raised last year and was shared between Swim Safe (Royal Life Saving Society of Australia) and Swim Vietnam. It’s only a week away and there’s still time to sign up for this amazing tournament and cause that has been co organised by Montgomerie Links, Royal Life Saving Society of Australia, Auscham and the Vietnam Swans.

Several schools have offered to help support the initiative of an unofficial “Water Safety Week” by running their own swimming programs in the next week to help raise awareness. They include Danang’s Singapore International School and HCMC’s International School of HCMC. How big will it be next year??

Saigon – Gaelic Aussie Rules Football Match and more

Next Saturday 17 March, Saigon’s Inaugural Bi Annual Combined Gaelic Aussie Rules Football Match will be held at RMIT. Sponsored items for raffle/auction are welcomed. It will be a mega St Patrick’s Day in Vietnam.

On Saturday, 7 April, the ABC School Day in District 7 will host a Family Fun Day. It will run from 8.30am – midday and they’re keen for Aussie Rules to be represented through an Auskick session. If you would like to help out, please advise.

The feel good story of the week: Swannies’ skipper, Dukesy has reported that congratulations are due to his friends, Laurie and Beth, who have just had a baby. What makes Laurie and Beth special is that they met each other at the Swannies’ 2010 AFL Grand Final Party in Saigon. As former Australian Treasurer, Peter Costello once said, “It’s fine to have a baby for mum and for dad but just make sure you have one for the Swannies”. How good are those Swannies’ babies?

Nha Trang

On 1 April, an Auskick clinic will be run in Nha Trang – and it would be awesome to have any Swannies in Nha Trang help out.

Robert Costabile is a friend of one of the Southern Dragons, Tung. Robert lives in Nha Trang where he runs a restaurant and works with eight local orphanages to provide food, support and school fees. Robert is putting together a day where they will bring together all the children from the orphanages in the province for a lunch and sports day, with local games and activities for kids of all ages.

If you can help out with the Auskick, .

Wotcha Binh Duong? Footy business as usual in the Binh

Dave O (I need another Swannies’ function) Shea continues to run training sessions on Thursday nights in Bing Duong.


Player’s memberships are now available. Details of social memberships will be announced this week.

We’ll give you the tip, wearing a Swannies’ top is the most fun you can have between Swannies’ functions.


For all your Supercoach needs and application forms, please contact (Ah McRae, you’ve done it again). Ross is also trialling twitter for Supercoach as the Swannies move towards the 21st Century.

Final thought

It’s been a big week: another big week in Asian football and, with the teachers not being on holidays, a big week in education (as Nat reminds us).

Honk! Honk!

Posted in BOG, Fundraiser, supercoach | Leave a Comment »

President Saigon Sammy brings jumpers and more news

Posted by Vietnam Swans on March 9, 2012

Saigon Sam brings new footy jumpers and other good news this week. Photo Joe Garrison.

Saigon President, Sammy Conroy has loads on his mind: from the Cambodian Cannonball Run to membership packages, Gaelic /Aussie Rules tournaments, Swing to Swims, Supercoach…

It just keeps gettin’ bigger.


Well after a mega trip across to Cambodia which resulted in a controversial loss (not really; we stuffed up) we are now none from 2 this year so far. My Mum has been watching our progress via the media and she seems to think that I am to blame so will be at training this week to sort me out. Coaching committee will have us all in their sights as well, for sure, but expect a lighter run this week after getting knocked around for 5 quarters last week.


Training will be at the usual time of 2:30 at RMIT on Saturday but if you need some extra work, turn up at 2pm and we will run through Matt Natalotto’s pain session for a warm up.

Gaelic Game

The Irish lads are pumped about our game on the 17th (click here for another Ah McRae… poster special) and are looking to make a real event of it. Can everyone if you’re in or out for the weekend so we can get an idea on numbers and teams.


Memberships are finally sorted out with what has been a slow process turning out to be a great result for players. Jumpers will be available this week with the rest of the gear arriving in a few weeks.

Membership last year was VND1 million plus VND1.5 million for a jumper. However, based upon us sourcing a new supplier, we have been able to get the membership down to 2 million this year including a jumper which is awesome work by Phil and Alex. New sponsors, better materials and more choice is also a bonus.

Bring your VND2 million tomorrow to training and if you want to keep a loaned No. “10” jumper, we will sell these for 30 bucks (Little Nicko’s running everywhere). We also have supporters and junior memberships available.

Annual Swing to Swim Charity Golf Fundraiser

This event is turning mega with word that Rowan Luke and Ross Munn from our sponsor, the Commonwealth Bank, are locked in for the weekend. Swannies numbers look to be stronger than last year which is fantastic as it only adds to support this great event. Get on board the Swans train this weekend with two Swans’ functions on the same weekend (what are you going to do Dave????).

Super Coach and Tipping

Super Coach has got so awesome that Ross has had to put a second comp on to meet demand. The Swans’ tipping comp is also getting good numbers and if that’s not enough, get on board the tick tick Boom comp as well. Ross sent details round earlier and there will be an update on next week, you can also collar Ross at training this week.

See you all at training with no doubt more details and stuff I have forgotten.

For additional details, please contact the Saigon President, .

Posted in Fundraiser, supercoach | Leave a Comment »

Tuoi Tre newspaper reports on 2012 Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day

Posted by Vietnam Swans on February 19, 2012

Tuoi Tre Newspaper reports on the 2012 Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day.

The Tuoi Tre newspaper, last Friday, published an article titled, .

The article, written by Minh Phat, looks at the fundraiser which will be held on 17 March 2012 and is reproduced below.

Montgomerie Links, near Da Nang City, is to host the ‘2012 Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day’ on March 17 to raise funds for survival swimming programs in the central region of Vietnam, where more children die from drowning than road accidents.

The second annual event, organized by Montgomerie Links and the Aussie Rules footy club Vietnam Swans, is aiming to raise US$25,000 to donate to local swimming programs — and in Danang. The event is supported by The Royal Life Saving Society Australia (RLSSA) and Auscham Vietnam.

The 150 golfers taking part in this coming event will enjoy a fun experience on the 18-hole, highly-decorated Montgomerie Links Golf Course, which was voted the best in Vietnam for the past two years.

Firms and individuals are invited to join the golf event to lend a hand to raise awareness and save children from drowning.

“[We are] proud to host Swing to Swim due to the significance of drowning in our region… This charity golf event takes enormous steps to provide funding for these worthy swimming programs to save the lives of local citizens…” said The Montgomerie Links General Director Jon Tomlinson.

“Vietnamese children should not only survive but thrive in the waterways of Vietnam. Swim Vietnam and Swim Safe are unlocking an exciting world of safe swimming in this wonderful country,” added Vietnam Swans’ President, Phil Johns.

In 2011, Swim Vietnam taught over 1,000 children to swim and is aiming to teach 1,500 children this year. The program also trains adults as swimming teachers.

Since Swim Vietnam’s inception in Vietnam in 2008, they have successfully taught swimming to over 2,300 children and given them water safety skills which could help save their lives. Over 60 swimming teachers have also been trained.

“Two children in my school drowned when the road flooded and they were swept away two years ago… We can teach them how to save themselves in these types of situation … as most Vietnamese children do not know how to swim,” said Ho Huu Tung, a teacher of Quang Nam-based Duy Phu School whom was trained to be a swimming teacher.

Swim Safe runs a summer survival swimming program in Danang. It teaches over 5,000 children each year and provides training to high drowning provinces across Vietnam.

Vietnam Ministry of Health statistics state that at least 10 children drown here every day. Some international aid agency surveys call it the “silent epidemic” and estimate that it is possible that as many as 30 children drown per day in Vietnam.

For more information on Swing to Swim or to join the event please contact Tel: 0510 3941 942. Email: . Or, email the .

  • To view the original article, .
  • To see more articles about the Vietnam Swans that have appeared in the media, click here.

Posted in Fundraiser, Swim | Leave a Comment »

$501 for $2,300 worth of Golf?? Swing to Swim starts with seismic splash!

Posted by Vietnam Swans on January 8, 2012

Swing to Swim is coming. And right now, $501 could get you a coporate golf package at Montgomerie Links worth $2,300!

Yesterday, the Swannies kicked off our 2012 season with the Inaugural Vietnam-Australian Friendship Match against the Southern Dragons (congratulations to the Dragons for winning a keenly contested match).

Swannies’ National President, Phil Johns, was delighted to announce during the after-match presentations that , Danang, and the Swannies have decided to make a seismic splash with respect to the upcoming 2nd Annual Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day and Dinner Fundraiser which will be held on 17 March, 2012.

Montgomerie Links has very generously donated a Corporate Golf Package to the cause that includes:

  • Complimentary 18 hole Green Fees for 20 players
  • $100 F&B Credit
  • Free Driving Range balls before round.
  • 12 month validity
  • Conditions: Not Redeemable on weekends before 11am or on the Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day.
  • Value: $2300.

This package could be yours for just $501! We are currently accepting bids for this golf package until 5pm on Monday 16 January. Please email Phil Johns at Obviously, the highest bidder will win the package. The Swannies have kicked off proceedings with a bid of $500.

Where does the money go?

All money raised will be shared equally between Swim Vietnam and Swim Safe (Royal Life Saving Society of Australia).  As you will be aware, more children die in this country from drowning than road accidents. These two organisations are doing a special job in teaching kids to not only survive but thrive in the inland waters and long shore line of this country. For further information, click onto:

Last year's Inaugural Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day

Details of the 2012 Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day and Dinner Fundraiser

The Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day and Dinner will be held on 17 March 2012 at Montgomerie Links. Like last year, there will be loads of competitions, prizes and fun on the golf course during the day. For those of you who think golf is “a good walk ruined”, don’t worry. It will all come together for you when the sun starts to set and the band starts up in the evening. We’ll be seated outdoors overlooking the magnificent fairways and greens of Montgomerie when a sumptuous dinner will be served. We will also have an auction of some amazing items to raise further funds to support the swimming. Last year, auctioneer, Micky Francis provided some hilarious entertainment during the proceedings. It was an absolute highlight of the evening.

Full details are still to be announced but as a guide, please see last year’s .

Registrations of interest for sponsorship and/or attending Swing to Swim

If you would like to register your interest in being a sponsor and/or playing in the Swing to Swim event, then please email Jon Tomlinson at Montgomerie Links on or the .

Remember, just $501 for $2,300 of golfing value at Montgomerie Links!

The Swannies have placed a bid of $500 for Montgomerie Links Corporate Golf Package for 20 players (that’s just $25 per player!). $501 will beat it. The auction will close at 5pm Vietnam time on Monday 16 January. For the latest bidding information, please check

Closing thought

Are you living in Australia and considering coming out for the ANZAC Dawn Service (25 April) and the Vietnam Swans’ ANZAC Friendship Match (on 21 April)? Perhaps you could also consider a side trip to Danang/Hoi An and Montgomerie Links… And help save a life.

Posted in Fundraiser, Swim | Leave a Comment »

Unveiling of Swannies banner for 2011 Indochina Cup, Vientiane, Lao

Posted by Vietnam Swans on November 25, 2011

The Swannies' 5th Annual Indochina Cup, 26 November, 2011, Vientiane, Lao.

The 5th Indochina Cup starts tomorrow, Saturday, 26 November, 2011. The National President, Phil Johns, writes an update:

Ross McRae, Ah McRae, you’ve done it again, has just done it again. Ross has just finished his banner design for the Swannies defense of the Indochina Cup. The banner reviews the Swannies’ previous 12 months.

So, where do you start?

There’s the Swannies’ annual December golf day (in Melbourne) and cricket day (MCG Members), Queensland floods fundraisers, Christchurch earthquake fundraisers, Swing to Swim Charity Golf Days, swimming programs, Asian Championships, last year’s Indochina Cup, matches against the Royal Australian Navy, Guangzhou Scorpions, AFL Masters and Malaysia, the ANZAC Friendship Match, a string of important farewells of people leaving Vietnam, Swannies’ AFL Grand Final Parties, Bitexco Tower Vertical Runs, All Asians, ex AFLer Richard Osborne and Vietnam Veteran, Kenny Earney at the Noble Park RSL Club and… and…

If you need any graphic design work done, Ross McRae is the man to speak to. He does an outstanding job again and again. The only thing he won’t do is promote himself – even after I asked him to put a picture of himself on the banner, toiling away on his computer! Ross can be contacted at

This will be the Swannies last game of the calendar year. We will be farewelling two greats: Derrin Limbrick and Dan Kindness. We will be introducing a string of new players, on their first Swannies’ tour, to the fun and excitement of playing footy in other parts of Asia. And, we’re going to be defending the Indochina Cup (ICC) which we won last year in Saigon.

2011, as shown in Ross’ banner, has been an outstanding year for the Swannies. As Hanoi Coach Ado said, the crowning achievement for the Swannies would be “for the Swannies to go B2B ICC 2011”.

Even though it is our last game/tournament of the year, there’s still plenty more happening in Saigon, Hanoi and Melbourne…

Coming Up:

  • 26 November, 5th Annual Indochina Cup, Lao
  • 1 December, Farewell Celebration Golf Tournament for Australian Consul General, Graeme Swift. With Wayne Grady. Saigon
  • 3 December, B&F and Swannies Christmas Party, Boomarang Bistro, Saigon
  • 4 December, Auscham Christmas Party supported by the Swannies, Boomarang Bistro, Saigon
  • 10 December, B&F and Swannies Christmas Party, JASPAS, Hanoi
  • 17 December, Auscham Christmas Party supported by the Swannies, Hanoi (tbc)
  • 28 December, The 5th Vietnam Swans’ Annual Cricket Day, MCG Members, Melbourne
  • 29 December, The 7th Vietnam Swans’ Annual Ryan Jefferey Golf Classic, Ivanhoe, Melbourne
  • 7 January, 2012, Vietnam Swans Vs Southern Dragons (Melbourne club comprising numerous Vietnamese Australians), Saigon

Start registering your interest in attending each (some) of these crack-a-jack events.

Little Johnnie wouldn't have said, "Keep walking". Honk!

And finally…

Today, the Swannies can reliably report that Johnnie Walker was misquoted. He didn’t say, “Keep walking”. Get real, what does “keep walking” mean?

Little Johnnie would have said, “Keep Honking!” Because, like the rest of us, he would love the footy.

Honk! Honk!

Good luck to all the tourers to Vientiane this weekend. And to those of us who can’t make this tour, thanks for helping us get there.

Posted in Farewell, Fundraiser, Navy | 2 Comments »

Wayne Grady to attend Australian Consul General’s Farewell Golf Tournament, Saigon

Posted by Vietnam Swans on November 24, 2011

Wayne Grady, to play in Australian Consul General's Farewell Golf Tournament next week in Saigon. Click on poster to enlarge.

Australian Consul General, Graeme Swift, shall have his Farewell Celebration Golf Tournament next Thursday, 1 December 2011, in Saigon.

The day has just received a huge boost with the news that Australian golfing legend, , shall play in the event.

Grady was born in Brisbane and turned professional in 1978. He is best known for winning the , one of golf’s four majors, in 1990. Grady was also runner up at the Open Championship in 1989, losing in a playoff against Greg Norman and Mark Calcavecchia.

Do you want to play with Wayne Grady and Graeme Swift??

How would you like to play in the same flight as Graeme Swift and Wayne Grady? Lunch, drinks – and a few tips from Wayne about your golf? (Tip # 1: Do you know what your biggest problem is? You’re standing too close to the ball. After you’ve swung.)

Well, now you can!

Simply place a bid by emailing , sponsors of the Wayne Grady visit. Bidding starts at $200 and all money raised will go to .

Wayne Grady wins the 1990 PGA Championship - and will now play in Saigon.

Separate private donations can be made by following the directions in the attached document, .

If your company would like to be associated with the Wayne Grady auction, contact .

Graeme Swift – a great Swannies’ supporter

Graeme has been a great supporter of the Vietnam Swans attending and participating in many of our functions – including the Swannies’ Christmas Party and B&F in Saigon on Saturday 3 December. It would be very fitting if the Club was well represented at his Farewell Celebration Golf Tournament.

Graeme Swift at the 2011 ANZAC Friendship Match, Vung Tau Dog Track - part of the Vabis Group.

If you can attend the golf day with the likes of other famous people including our Saigon Prez, Saigon Prez Elect, National Prez and a Mark Long string of others, please come along! It will also serve as a great warm up for those of us attending the Swannies Annual Golf Day in Melbourne on 29 December. Green fees are $110 (or $100 for Auscham members). See the attached poster for full details.

The Vabis Group and Crown Relocations – Two Headline Sponsors of the Golf Day and the Swannies

The Vabis Group, a very close friend of the Vietnam Swans, owns the Vung Tau Dog Track which is the home of our Annual ANZAC Friendship Match.

Another headline sponsor of the day is Crown Relocations. And you are hearin’ yet another Swannies’ Sponsor if you’re hearin’ me.

Go you Swannies!

Update: Sunday, 27 November on Dong for Dongs Fundraiser

  • $450 current bid for golf with Wayne Grady and Graeme Swift
  • $2,270 corporate donations
  • $2,850 personal donations
  • $5,570 raised so far!

Auction closes midnight, Monday 28 November 2011. to make a pledge, email .

Posted in Farewell, Fundraiser, Legend | 1 Comment »

(Another) 5 minutes with The Flyer: Micky Francis, Pt 2

Posted by Vietnam Swans on September 16, 2011

When not honking his horn, the Flyer can be found sleeping with his footy. Pic: last month's Asian Champs.

Dave Kainey is the Flyer and this time, he’s spending (another) five minutes with Club Legend, Mick Francis who played a key role in starting it all at the then, Hanoi Swans, back in 2001. Here’s Part 2. (To see Part 1, click here.)

Q4. Your thoughts on the performance by the Swans at last month’s Asian Championships in Bangkok and their standing in Asian Football?

Swannies are great! Huge performance at the Champs. But why not if you can live and work in a place like Vietnam where you can do, pretty much, anything. So why not be a leader in Asian football? We have guys running the Club who have the vision, have great passion for it and it is now reflected in how we are perceived in Asian Footy circles.

Mick Francis and wife, Yen, at the Swing to Swim Charity Golf Day back in May. Some amazing auctioneering work helped raise $25,000.

Q5. Mick, you have seen many players, partners, supporters and sponsors develop relationships at different levels with the Vietnam Swans. Many, if not all, who have to move on, continue to enjoy their association with the Vietnam Swans. Is that how you see it?

I think it’s a great reminder for people of their time spent in Vietnam. The Swannies have been a platform for many of them and have played a big part in their lives while they were in Vietnam. I know everyone of them remembers being a part of our Club.

Q6. Mick, family life and business all going well in Vietnam?

Family, business and life – all good here, mate. Thanks!

Willy, last June, resplendent in Club Blazer, stands alongside the Sydney Swans Jumper in Jaspas, Hanoi.

Q7. Finally mate, I wanted to bring up some of the former / current team mates. Give me, in 5 words or less, a response to the name.

  • Gus ‘stop’ McEwan – Passion, committed, still no girl friend.
  • Jarrod ‘Juddy’ Dale – Can play! Captain/Coach, leader.
  • Mick ‘MJ’ Johnston – Improving with age. Can sing.
  • David ‘Sharpie’ Sharpe – Legend. Great on tour.
  • Scott ‘Pacey’ Stacey – Can surprise for a little guy.
  • Justin ‘Pumper’ Hart – Purple vibrator (Ed’s note: ‘vibrant personality’ perhaps?). Champion efforts.
  • Mark ‘Willie’ Williams – Golden girls, golden boxers.
  • Nick ‘Nicko’ Shiells – Number 10 will become the captain’s number.
  • Derrin ‘Dezza’ Limbrick (Saigon Prez) – Committed, loyal to Vietnam footy.
  • Dan ‘Crazy’ Hopkins (Hanoi Prez) – Champion young bloke. Great for us.
  • Phil ‘Fabbo’ Johns – Vision, communicator, new world leader.

Thanks big fella for spending 5 minutes with The Flyer.

Footnote re photo of Willy:  This photo of Willy standing next to the framed Sydney Swans jumper was taken last June. Willy bought the jumper, generously donated by the Sydney Swans, at auction at the Black Saturday Bushfire fundraiser in Saigon, March, 2009. The jumper now hangs at JASPAS, Hanoi, home of the Vietnam Swans AFL Grand Final Party.

Posted in Fundraiser, Legend | 3 Comments »

Sydney Swans’ Christchurch Eathquake jumper hangs at Boomarang, Saigon

Posted by Vietnam Swans on September 11, 2011

Boomarang Bistro's Adam Zakharoff with the Sydney Swans jumper from the Christchurch fundraiser.

Yesterday, the Sydney Swans jumper that was donated to the Christchurch earthquake appeal in Saigon (see Sydney Swans push Christchurch fundraiser in Saigon tonight) was hung on the wall of the Boomarang Bistro – home of the Vietnam Swans’ 2011 AFL Grand Final Party in Saigon.

The jumper was bought by the Vietnam Swans.

A plaque will be added to the framed jumper which says:

On 22 February 2011, a devastating earthquake hit Christchurch, New Zealand.

In Saigon, the New Zealand Chamber of Commerce responded by holding a fundraiser that raised more than USD100,000.

The Sydney Swans supported the cause by generously donating two signed jumpers for auction. The above jumper was bought by the Vietnam Swans.

Signatures: (Coach) John Longmire and (Co-Captains) Adam Goodes and Jarrad McVeigh.

The AFL’s Footy Record also ran an article in its 1-3 April 2011 issue titled, . A copy of the original article has been included with the framed jumper.

Posted in Fundraiser | Leave a Comment »

Vietnam Swans send condolences to Sydney Swans

Posted by Vietnam Swans on August 27, 2011

Jarrad's and Clementine's tragedy. The jumper donated by Jarrad to ease someone else's tragedy.

On Wednesday, Sydney Swans co-captain, Jarrad McVeigh and wife, Clementine suffered a personal tragedy when their little baby daughter, Luella, passed away. Luella, who was just a month old, died of serious heart complications.

Swans’ coach, John Longmire, said that the Club would support Jarrad and Clementine ““.

Yesterday, the Vietnam Swans wrote to the Sydney Swans to offer our deepest condolences.

Just five months ago, Jarrad was helping others in need. Jarrad had signed a Sydney Swans jumper (together with Longmire and Goodes) which was auctioned in HCMC to raise money for the Christchurch Earthquake Appeal.

In this afternoon’s match against the Geelong Cats, the Sydney Swans will wear black armbands in memory of Luella. And the Vietnam Swans will be watching in support.

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Five Minutes with the Flyer – Saigon Prez, Dez Limbrick

Posted by Vietnam Swans on August 12, 2011

Dave Kainey is the Flyer!

Dave Kainey is the Flyer and this week, he caught up with the Saigon President, Derrin Limbrick.

1. Dez, you have been associated with the Vietnam Swans for several years now, as a player, coaching panel member and Saigon President. How has the journey been from your point of view?

It’s been a fantastic journey so far.  Over the last three years I have been involved in many great moments.  It is also satisfying to know that I have been involved in a group which has helped the Club move forward, overcome challenges which has ultimately lead to some great success stories.  I think that our goals were pretty modest when I first became involved, and now there seems to be a collective voice throughout the Club who are hungry to achieve, which is fantastic.

Our first trip to Cambodia is what really got me hooked.  We had a small undermanned team yet still pulled together and made it though to the decider in the Indochina Cup. The camaraderie was fantastic. It was also a memorable for many other moments however those stories can be left for another Flyer Special.

Dez and wife, Fleur.

Probably the highlights on the football field have included winning the Indochina Cup (2010) , the Kainey Cup (2010) and the  ANZAC Friendship Match against Hong Kong earlier this year.  However for me personally, there has been many truly great moments on the field during most of our matches.

Off the field I think that we can be very proud of the state of our football club.  We are financially strong because of ongoing support from our major sponsors.  Our membership base covers the length and breadth of Vietnam and has spread to many other SE Asian Countries, including lots of ex players who remain members and supporters of the Swans, living in Australia.

We now have strong links to the community off the field and have been passionate and active supporters of Swim Vietnam  as well as Loreto Vietnam. We also have been actively involved in several important fundraisers in the last few years which has been a demonstration of the integrity and passion of our footy club beyond the game of AFL.  We have been fortunate to have many skilled and talented Swannies to help us achieve success both on and off the field.

2. With Phil (National President), Dan (President Hanoi) and yourself (Saigon President) at the helm, the Vietnam Swans have had a massive calendar for 2011, collectively you must have had some great support?

We have had so many great contributors to the Club since I became the Saigon President.  Fabbo and Danny A were there from the start and have been the rocks that helped me evolve into my role.  Since then there are too many to name, but collectively this has allowed me to turn a lot of ideas into reality. What is particularly pleasing this year is the number of new people who have put their hand up to contribute.  We have already had new volunteers helping with Club functions, training and tours. The unsung hero behind the scenes had been my amazing wife.  She has helped me out on so many occasions and is patient enough to allow me to spend more time than I should helping run the Club.

3. You are an experienced Asian Championships campaigner. What have been the highlights?

This will be my third Asian Champs.  Last year I was enjoying the first week of my honeymoon which of course meant I could not be there. The first Champs were great for me because it was my first tour with the Swans and I had only been in Saigon for two months, even if we didn’t win a match.   Apart from that, I have had sickness and injuries to deal which have really restricted my contribution on the field, so this year I am pretty fired up to make sure it is memorable.

4. How prepared are the playing group for the Asian Championships? What can the supporters expect of the group?

The timing of the Champs has not been ideal this year because it is right at the end of the summer holidays so we have had a lot of guys away over the last couple of months.  However, in saying that, I am very happy with our preparation.  Since the trip to KL we have been planning every training session to maximize our chances at the Champs.  We have included more fitness work than ever before and I have enjoyed watching the squad improve.   I know that Dan and Adrian have been working the guys in Hanoi hard as well so I am confident that every player in the squad will give us their best effort.  That is all you can ask for.

5. What are your thoughts on the state of footy in Asia Pacific in general?

From my perspective Asian Footy is strong and will only get stronger, especially as Asia’s presence grows in the global community.  Eventually Australian Rules Football will become the number one sport in the whole of the Asia Pacific and Fabbo will become the official Ambassador for AFL in Asia.  Ok, I might be getting a bit ahead of myself there, but then again you never know.  I am looking forward to reading that 5 mins with The Flyer!

Have a great Asian Championships and thanks for being a part of ‘5 Minutes with The Flyer’.

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