The Inaugural AFL Canada Cup has been run a won in Vancouver this past weekend with the ‘Wild Swaints’ (Players from the Ottawa Swans and Hamilton Wildcats joining the Montreal Saints) as the victors!
Saturday the 3rd saw a beautiful day of weather in Vancouver with all teams descending upon Burnaby Lake Sports Complex with an air of anticipation surrounding them.
The Footy did not disappoint, with the first two games (Calgary Kookaburras vs Burnaby Eagles and The Wild Swaints vs the Blue Roos) being decided by less than a point.
In between the morning and afternoon sessions the men in attendance played an exhibition game that was quite the spectacle with multiple goals scored and no shortage of action.
The afternoon slate replicated the morning in terms of competition with the goals flowing and the contest as hot as the weather.
Following the contests of the day, AFL Canada Head Umpire Derek Govier held an open information session on Umpiring and rules keeping in line with AFL Canada’s goal of improving the quality and quantity of umpiring in Canada.
Vancouver’s weather didn’t cooperate as well on Sunday with light rain trickling down upon arrival, which progressively increased throughout the day.
Some brilliant footy pushed through the rain however with tight contests between Burnaby Eagles and the Seattle Grizzlies, as well as Calgary Kookaburras and the Blue Roos.
Just as the Beer Garden and Sausage Sizzle started to fire up there was another exhibition game on deck, with a co ed flag game being played allowing those spectators who wanted to try the game an opportunity to test their skills!
Semi Final 1 kicked off with the Blue Roos booking their way into the final with a win over the gallant Calgary Kookaburras – Hilary perry, Haley Jones, Lara Hilmi all playing great games for their respective teams.
Semi Final 2 saw a tight tussle between the Burnaby Eagles and the Wild Swaints with the Swaints coming out on top – Burnaby Eagle Leonor Gaillard fighting hard all day even after sustaining a hand injury.
The Final was one of the better games we had experienced across the weekend despite the soggy conditions with nothing separating the teams at the half. The Swaints pulled away late in the last quarter to take victory in a tight Final!
Best players from the final were tough to draw out with everyone across the board contributing fully but in the end it was Roxanne Besner and Alex Trollip who led the SWaints to victory while Haley Jones and Lara Hilmi battled away gallantly for the Blue Roos.
Leonor Gaillard from the Burnaby Eagles was deemed the Tournament MVP whilst Mable Dunn from the Etobicoke Kangaroos was unanimously voted the Top Rookie for the Tournament.
A big thankyou to AFLBC and the volunteers there for hosting a wonderful event, Mooses Downunder for hosting a brilliant afterparty and all volunteers who put their hands up to help out in the lead up and on the day.
Tournament photos, videos, and more to come!