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AFL – Indian Team Finds Sponsors, Scripts First Ever Win In International Arena

Posted on Monday, February 17, 2014 by ARFAI,


Published: 18th September, 2011.


NEW DELHI: The nascent Indian team of Australian Rules Football came back having scripted its first ever win in any international match, that too, the apex in the sport, the Australian Football League, playing against 17 other countries, and managed to keep its sponsors happy.

India moved through the tournament developing the performance every match, against New Zealand, Sweden, China, France, East Timor and Peace Team (Israel & Palestine combined).

The match against China was very close, with India ahead in the 1st quarter. But the injury of one of the teammates, which took him directly to the hospital, probably let the moral of the team down a little. But the news read next day that ‘China snatched a big victory away from India’.

But the historic first ever win came on 24 August, when India beat Timor Leste (East Timor) 60-52.

The sponsorship response has been extremely enthusiastic, says Sudip Chakraborty, 21, secretary general of Australian Football League-India, of which the biggest contribution has been from the League organisers themselves.

Beside, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan – Australia came in with a lot of sponsorship in kind, along with Lingona Pty Ltd (an Australian mining company); Richmond Football Club (AFL club); Celebrate India, the Indian tourism lobby firm; Australia India Society; Virgin Airlines; and Speedy Promotions.

A few businessmen from Kolkata also chipped in with money in their private capacity.

Chakraborty says that the work ahead for the sport is to spread it to a minimum of five states and establish state federations, so that it is within the basic legal framework of applying for becoming a national federation for this sport, which is just three years old in the country.

At the moment Kerala and Tamil Nadu has seen some work on getting exposed to the sport and finding enthusiastic players, but the hard work liesahead, Chakraborty told SportzPower.