INTERNATIONAL RULES STALEMATE BETWEEN GAA AND AFL
By Ben Jensen THE JIG IS UP FOR INTERNATIONAL RULES, the football concept developed by the Australian Football League (AFL) and Irish body Gaelic Athletics Association (GAA) remains in no man's land after a meeting in Paris Thursday night. The GAA remains furious at the perceived level of violence directed at its amateur players by the Australians; and also the level of poaching that continues to occur of the junior ranks following Under 17 'Test' matches between the two nations each year. Regardless, AFL CEO Andrew Demetriou enjoyed his trip to France and thought the summit was still worthwhile, even though both AFL and junior level competitions are canceled indefinitely.
This season Collingwood and Brisbane debuted Martin Clarke and Colm Begley, both recruited after having promising starts to their Gaelic Football careers, while others of Irish extraction are Sydney's Tadhg Kennelly and Carlton's Setanta and Aisake Ó hAilpín. The Magpies have also signed up teenager Kevin Dyas, who certainly won't be the last Irish recruit over the next few years.
But it was the violence on the most recent series, the 2006 tour by the Australians of Ireland, and that the season before in Australia, that really pushed the GAA (and more so the constituent clubs) over the edge. Earlier this month GAA president Nickey Brennan refused to let it go. "My annoyance at what happened last year hasn't changed". In addition to the on field violence, the pub barman bashing by Carlton's Brendan Fevola also left a nasty taste in the Irishman's mouth.
MEDIA RELEASE FROM THE AUSTRALIAN FOOTBALL LEAGUE
Representatives of the AFL and GAA met in Paris last
night (Australian time) for their first meeting since the 2006 International
Rules series, played in Ireland. GAA President Nickey Brennan and Player
Welfare Manager Paraic Duffy met with AFL Chief Executive Officer Andrew
Demetriou and said it was a
It was agreed that further discussions were needed before the issue of a resumption of the International Rules series could be considered. Both sides emphasised their commitment to maintaining the long standing relationship between the two bodies and a further meeting will take place early in the New Year.
CHRIS JOHNSON LEAVES A SEA OF CARNAGE AT THE SECOND TEST, 2005