Atlantic Alliance


OCTOBER 10, 2001

On October 10th, representatives of the United States Australian Football League, the Canadian Australian Football Association, the British Australian Rules Football League, the Danish Australian Football League and the Australian Rules Football League of Ireland met in London to establish the Atlantic Alliance. This international body brings together the five major Australian Rules Football countries in the Western hemisphere. The Atlantic Alliances primary goal is to follow up the success of Inaugural Atlantic Alliance cup with a regular international tournament that will move between the five nations. The Alliance plans to hold the next cup in North America in 2004. According to the USAFLs Founding President, Paul OKeeffe, The Atlantic Alliance is going to become an extremely important in the development of Aussie Rules in the Western Hemisphere. It is a natural evolution of the growth of the sport throughout the region in recent years. As a grassroots movement the Atlantic Alliance stands to become an integral part of the development of the game at an international level.

The second major goal of the Atlantic Alliance is to coordinate on issues important to the development of Australian Rules Football at the international level, including junior development, umpire development and the AFL International Cup. The Alliance also plans to work closely with representatives to the AFLs International Development Committee, Rich Mann (former USAFL president) and Ciaran Ohara, from Ireland.

According to Paul OKeeffe, The recent tournament in London was groundbreaking; it was the first international tournament in the world where only citizens of the respective countries played. The games also showcased the standard of footy from each country and that non-Australians are capable of some excellent footy. The game of Australian Rules has always been hamstrung by the lack of a representative level game. It was exciting to see the level of pride of that each American Revolution player showed in wearing their National jumper. As an era, the ability to represent your country in the sport of Australian Rules Football has now begun.

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