/ GAA

One-off match in Perth for International Rules in November

Updated: Wednesday, 23 Apr 2014 14:32 | Comments

The International Rules Series will return in November - with only All-Australian
The International Rules Series will return in November - with only All-Australian

Ireland will play Australia in a one-off International Rules Test at Patersons Stadium in Perth on Saturday 22 November.

Following one-sided victories for Ireland in the two most recent Test Series, it has also been confirmed that Australia will be represented by more talented AFL players and officials, with the line-up limited to individuals who have been honoured with selection in the All-Australian squad during their careers.

Discussions are well-advanced around some modifications to the IRS rules to allow for a broader range of AFL player types to be able to compete successfully.

GAA President Liam O'Neill has said he is pleased that Ireland’s best Gaelic footballers will have the opportunity in 2014 to pit their wits against the cream of the AFL.

He stated: “After the conclusion of the 2013 Series, we expressed our genuine fears for the future of International Rules if the best players from both countries were unable to commit to their national sides.

“Both Associations agreed that the one sided nature of the last two Series’ has had a major effect on attendances and general public interest; it is obvious to us all that if this trend is not reversed in 2014, it will be difficult to argue that there is any sustainable future for the game at this point in time.”

However he said that a date in late November will assist enormously with player availability and is confident that the sporting public would react positively to what was being proposed for 2014.

“A sell out crowd in November and a game that engages the attendance would certainly give us something to build on for the future.”

O'Neill added that he is particularly pleased with a date later in the calendar as it will mean that the Tour will have significantly less impact on the Club Championships.

Ireland will be seeking to play a meaningful warm-up game in Melbourne ahead of the Test game.

Paul Earley will again be in charge of the Irish team, with his backroom team including Tony Scullion (Derry), Seamus Mc Carthy (Tipperary), Jarlath Fallon (Galway) and Nicholas Walsh (Cavan/GWS Giants).

The Australian team will be coached by current All Australian and Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson.  

The team will also be represented by Eddie McGuire who has been appointed Chef de Mission for the Test.

Evans said the AFL is confident of attracting a big crowd to Patersons Stadium as well as a strong television audience to see the competition’s best known players line up together to win back the Cormac McAnallen Trophy after Ireland’s domination of the past two Series.

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