The 2020 AGM scheduled for Sunday 6th December has been postponed until Q1 2021 following a decision made by the board. An email has been sent to all members with further details.
American Football Ireland is delighted to announce two exciting club grant sessions for our clubs. The first session will focus on the Sports Capital Programme for our ROI clubs while the second will look at the relevant grants for our NI clubs. Details are as follows:
- ROI Sports Capital Programme: Tuesday 17th November 2020, 7pm-8.30pm
- NI Grant Landscape: Thursday 19th November 2020, 7pm-8.30pm
AFI encourages as many clubs as possible to register for these events. By attending the online forum, you will be well-positioned to apply for new funding for your club, in a competitive environment. Recordings of the webinar and supporting documents will be made available to attendees following each event.
Each club has been sent details on how to register for the appropriate session – if your club has not received this email, please email email@example.com
On behalf of the American Football Ireland board, I wish to inform you of the resignation of our president, Orla McAleese due to unforeseen circumstances.
First of all, I would like to acknowledge the tough decision Orla made to step away from a sport and a membership which I know she loved.
Most people in life strive to achieve success. While in her role as president of AFI, Orla has far exceeded success. Her dedication and commitment to American Football Ireland is unmatched and undeniable. In 3 years, Orla has worked tirelessly to develop strong relationships within AFI and with our external stakeholders. As a result, this has really set up AFI for continued growth and success long into our future. She has given up her free time to run and promote our association at all levels. She is a key figure and reason why AFI are on a journey of governance compliance.
On behalf of the AFI board, our administration, our directors and our membership, I wish to say a huge thank you to Orla for all she has done for American Football Ireland over the past 3 years.
Interim AFI President
The Irish Wolfhounds Flag Football coaching staff has finalized the selection of the first 32 athletes to train with the Wolfhounds Flag Football squad in 2021.
The selected athletes will be given a training plan to follow over the next few months in order to prepare for squad training beginning in 2021. The plan will cover strength and conditioning, nutrition, regular check-ups, individual position-based and skill-specific drills, and when possible (within COVID-19 guidelines) group drills.
The coaching staff are keen to reiterate that if you were not selected on this occasion, keep working hard to improve your game – chances to be selected for the squad will arise in the future.
The 32 athletes selected are listed below:
The American Football Ireland AGM will NOT take place as previously advertised on the 8th November 2020.
The new date for the AGM is Sunday 6th December 2020. It will take place at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Northwood Park, Santry Demense, Dublin at 2pm (same venue as the 2019 AGM).
We are Constitutionally bound to advertise our AGM before year end and this date is subject to Covid restrictions being appropriately lifted.
We will have a Presidential election and a number of board positions becoming available so in the interim please share this notice with your members who may wish to consider joining the management of AFI.
Further information on submission of proposals and election nominees will be forwarded in due course.
American Football Ireland
American Football Ireland has taken the decision to cancel the 2020 flag football season in its entirety following the Irish Governments announcement earlier this week regarding all Irish counties entering level 3 restrictions. Results from any games played in the 2020 season will be null and void.
We understand that participants will be disappointed, particularly after the season got underway in many parts of Ireland, but the risk to our members welfare has become too great with the latest resurgence of COVID-19.
Those who have purchased flag football membership for the 2020 season will have their membership extended for the 2021 flag football season. If there are any queries regarding this, please direct them via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Training within clubs can continue in line with Government restrictions and clubs risk assessments. For further information on restrictions, please see gov.ie
There are no changes to the teams in each conference. The Northern Conference will kick off this Saturday as planned in Craigavon. Southern Conference matches are postponed until the 10th October at the earliest.
Teams in each conference have been adjusted – please see updated conferences below. The Northern and Central Conferences will kick off this Saturday, with Southern Conference matches postponed until the 10th October at the earliest.
- Antrim Jets
- Belfast Trojans Dev
- Causeway Giants
- Donegal Derry Vipers
- Downpatrick Saints
- UU Elks
- Cill Dara Reapers
- Galway Warriors
- Louth Mavericks Dev
- Westmeath Minotaurs
- WIT Vikings
- Dublin City Quetzals
- Dublin Rebels
- North Dublin Pirates
- South Dublin Panthers
- The AFI Flag Football Committee are providing constant updates to designated representatives from each team. If you are a member of a team and have a query, please contact your team representative first.
- No spectators are permitted at games due to COVID-19 regulations. AFI personnel will be at each venue to enforce.
American Football Ireland has taken the decision to cancel the 2020 youth season in its entirety following todays announcement regarding County Dublin.
Whilst we know this will be a huge disappointment for many, it is the action that has to be taken in response to the rapid rise of COVID-19 cases.
Those who have purchased youth membership for the 2020 season will have their membership extended for the 2021 youth season. If there are any queries regarding this, please direct them via email to email@example.com
The 2020 flag football season is currently under review.
AFI requires volunteers and officials for the upcoming 2020 youth season, which sees the next generation of American football players take to the field and compete – do your part to help facilitate the games!
Games will take place on 20th Sep, 4th Oct & 18th Oct from 1pm to 5pm at the Sport Ireland Campus, Dublin. Volunteer roles include chain crew, scoreboard operator, camera persons as well as officials.
If you are interested in volunteering or officiating, please complete the form below. The form will close at 8pm on Thursday 17th Sep.
AFI President Orla McAleese “This weekend saw the departure for two of our board colleagues, Christine Bolton and John Lynch. Both have left for personal reasons. I would like to acknowledge the work, input and support they have given to the association during their time on the board.
Their time and effort to work with their fellow members to help maintain and grow the sport has not gone without notice. Giving up their free time to attend meetings, work with our directors and members on queries, and endless nights of going through paperwork and policies.
From everyone on the board, our directors and our members, we thank both Christine and John for everything they have done over the past months and years.”
Yesterday evening, the Irish Government introduced new measures. As a result, all fixtures scheduled for this coming weekend have been postponed. No games will take place until the government has given the green light which will be the 13th September at the earliest.
Furthermore, no practice sessions should take place unless it meets the new guidelines set out below:
- strict avoidance of gatherings, including social gatherings, before or after events.
- strict adherence to 2 metre physical distancing before and after events during breaks in play, on the sidelines and avoidance of team huddles.
- limits of 15 apply to groups outside including training sessions .There should be no mixing between groups.
Teams based in Offaly, Laois or Kildare must NOT engage in contact practice sessions. Non-contact sessions are permitted.
For more information, please refer to this gov.ie update.
Teams based in Northern Ireland may continue to practice as normal as no new restrictions have been introduced.
If you have any queries please contact your clubs. Club managers please contact your relevant Director of Youth/Flag Football with any scheduling queries.
Brian Cleary, Commissioner, American Football Ireland
Following a meeting last night with representatives from each youth team, the schedule was voted to be adjusted.
Gameweek 1 will now take place on Sunday 20th September, with the following game weeks taking place on Sunday 4th October and Sunday 18th October.
Further details will be released in due course.
Flag Football is a version of American Football played without the contact element (similar to tag rugby). Flag Football is played as a mixed sport (males and females) for ages 16 and above. Select your county/closest county from the list below to see Flag Football clubs in that county and contact them to find out more about how to start playing:
AFI is delighted to announce the appointment of Peter McKenna to the board as an external board member.
Peter is a keen sports enthusiast and brings a vast wealth of experience including involvement in the GAA at various levels. Peter has worked in Ireland, the US, Canada and Europe in all levels of an organisation from board level to staff. Peter has a wide range of qualifications including a Professional Diploma in High Performance Business Development, a Professional Diploma in Applied Performance Analysis, a GAA Accredited Performance Analyst and is a Sport Ireland Accredited Coaching Tutor. Welcome to AFI Peter and best of luck in the role!
This now means that the board is running at full capacity with 9 board members – details of the AFI Management Team can be found here.
The inaugural AFI Madden Championship Series has come to an end! A total of 62 games were played across the two championships, with 64 players from 22 clubs competing but only 2 could prevail as champions! Here’s what happened in each final.
PS4 Championship Game
In probably one of the best Madden games you will ever see, Jonathan Hedley of the Belfast Knights took on Jahn Dasini of the Cork Admirals. Jonathan started the game on fire and had built up a 17-0 at the end of the first quarter, with most people thinking that this would be a blowout. Jahn then settled into the game and got onto the scoreboard in the second quarter, giving himself a chance as the score at halftime was 17-7 to Jonathan.
Jahn would then continue to build momentum, recovering an onside kick to start the second half and scoring on the resulting drive to bring himself well back into the game. The lead then swapped between the players several times with Jahn having a 35-31 lead with 13 seconds left on the clock. Jonathan then executed what has to be the clutch play of the tournament to score a touchdown and regain the lead with only 8 seconds left on the clock. Jahn was unable to score in the remaining time and the game finished 38-35 to Jonathan who was crowned the inaugural AFI PS4 Madden Champion!
Xbox One Championship Game
The second final of the day saw Darren Quinn of the Donegal/Derry Vipers face James Smyth of the South Dublin Panthers in what was another close game with the lead changing sides on multiple occasions. It was a lively start to the game with Darren getting on the scoreboard first and taking a 14-7 lead into the second quarter, with James adding a field goal in the second quarter to take the score to 14-10. A key point in the game saw Darren sack James QB at the end of the second quarter whilst in Darren’s’ red zone, meaning that time would run out and James getting no points to close the second half, when it was highly likely he would get a 3 points through a field goal. Half time score: 14-10 to Darren.
Undeterred, James came out the second half and scored on the first drive to take the lead. The lead would change several more times. James was chasing the game at 4 points down with less than 2 minutes to go when the play of game saw Darren intercept James at the 50-yard line, effectively ending the game. Darren managed to add another score before the full-time whistle, with the game finishing 35-24 to Darren who was crowned the inaugural AFI Xbox One Madden Champion!
To our membership,
I wanted to write this open letter to all of you, our members, in light of recent events that occurred inside and outside of our football family.
We are living in strange times; COVID-19 has made us look at how we live and how we go about our daily lives differently, and it is becoming the “new norm”.
It has affected our sport and we are putting the plans in place, with a roadmap, to return to play so you can enjoy football again.
It is a slow process but, like everything we have done as a board over the past three years, it will be done to the best of our abilities, with the outside expertise we need from our sporting partners, and with the greatest ease and safety for you and your clubs.
Over the last few weeks there has been a global movement against racism. As an association we have not responded. I wanted to take my time to think about what I would say but my lack of words has spoken louder than anything I could have said. I have always considered AFI as a progressive and inclusive association and I am proud that our membership is made up of such a diverse group of people.
I have seen so many words, in the past couple of weeks, to explain how people are feeling including statements from departments within our own association. The words I wish to see more the use of are respect when we practice diversity and inclusivity, and integrity in doing the right thing even when no one is looking.
It has become evident to me that we need to be doing more. As an association, we need to reinforce our core values and beliefs, we need to provide a safe and welcoming environment for everyone who takes part in our sport.
To many it may look like that, as an association, we are not doing anything and are staying silent, but the board has been working together for many weeks to introduce a new diversity project and for that we need your help.
Over the coming weeks, we will be contacting our members to learn about your experiences while participating in the sport. We will be appointing a workgroup to consider the feedback and use those learnings to develop an action plan to ultimately promote and grow respect for diversity within our association, starting within our clubs upward. We want to establish a safe and supportive environment and platform for our members to express their views.
I understand that we need to do better. We, as a national governing body, need to be leaders in setting the standard. Campaigns come and go; social media posts and profiles change daily and there will always be another good cause to support. Our plan for diversity will live on and become part of our association. It will become part of who we are, and we will speak as one voice across the different elements of our association. I call on you all to help us and make it a living reality.
American Football Ireland
Sport Northern Ireland have launched their new online version of the Safeguarding Children and Young People course. This will allow Northern Ireland coaches and volunteers to gain the required safeguarding certification they need to coach/volunteer with persons under the age of 18 (flag and youth football). The first dates have just been announced – please find these and further information at http://www.sportni.net/clubs-coaching/safeguarding.
Spaces are limited so if you as a coach or volunteer need this certification, please sign up as soon as possible.
Quick reminder that coaches and volunteers must also be vetted (find out how to here: https://www.americanfootball.ie/governance/vetting/).
With 60 games played, only 2 games remain as we are now at the Championship Game stage of both the PS4 and Xbox One series! 64 competitors from 22 clubs started the journey and we have now whittled our way down to only 4 competitors remaining. Here’s what happened at the semi-final stage.
Jonathan Hedley of the Belfast Knights was the first person into the AFI Madden 20 PS4 Championship Game having won 31-14 in the semi-final played last Thursday against Killian O’Loughlin of the MU Hurricanes.
Jahn Dasini of the Cork Admirals then beat Rory O’Dwyer of Trinity College in a nail bitter 31-28 win in the first semi-final game played on Sunday. Watch it again: https://youtu.be/NLf4bj65btQ.
Jonathan and Jahn will go head to head for the PS4 Championship this Sunday at 1pm – watch it live at twitch.tv/americanfootball_ireland.
In the Xbox One championship, James Smyth of the South Dublin Panthers beat Conor O’Neill of the Belfast Trojans in an all field goal affair, winning 12-9 after overtime! Watch it again: https://youtu.be/JtGj04VJruQ.
Darren Quinn of the Donegal/Derry Vipers then beat Ross O’Neill of the Downpatrick Saints in the last semi-final with a full-time score of 24-7, with the score being 0-0 at half time! Watch it again: https://youtu.be/GuWRo7B2qdc.
James will take on Darren for the Xbox One Championship this Sunday at 2pm – watch it live at twitch.tv/americanfootball_ireland.
A reminder to all clubs that statements of intent (non-binding) to compete in the 2020 flag and/or youth seasons should be sent to AFI by the deadlines set below:
- For flag football, by 8pm on Thursday 18th June. This should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
- For youth football, by 8pm on Monday 22nd June. This should be sent to email@example.com
Sport Ireland have launched their COVID-19 Return to Sport course which aims to equip club COVID Safety Officers with the knowledge required to complete their risk assessment – AFI highly recommends that all club COVID Safety Officers complete this course: https://www.sportireland.ie/covid19/course
Have you ever thought of starting your own American football club? Perhaps you are part of a club that doesn’t yet have a flag football team? Starting a flag football team is relatively simple which can reap huge benefits – this article will tell you the fundamentals of starting a flag football team.
Why Start A Flag Football Team?
Flag football is one of the most fun and challenging non-contact sports there is. It is similar to tag rugby – rather than a physical tackle, the players flag (tag) must be pulled which signals a tackle. This therefore takes the physical side of football out and focuses more on skill.
For a new club, it is a cost-effective way to play competitive football as well as an excellent starting block for developing the club – this could be to build the flag football programme and introduce more flag football teams (second team etc) or to develop the club and introduce a kitted team – there is a huge scope of development opportunities!
For established clubs, adding a flag football team to your club can attract more members as it appeals to a wider audience as well as provide a way for your club members to stay engaged in football during the kitted off season. It is also an excellent opportunity to introduce new people to the sport, who then build on the fundamentals they learn in flag football which allows them to feel more comfortable if they decide to try kitted football.
Finally, flag football is a sport for all. The AFI leagues allow for males and females aged 16+ to play, and with the Irish Wolfhounds flag programme being rebooted, there is even the chance to represent Ireland!
What Is Needed To Start A Flag Football Team?
What makes a club is the people behind it. For new clubs, we recommend assigning a chairperson, a treasurer, and a secretary at a minimum to help with the functions of the club. A head coach will need to be appointed at a very minimum whilst we also encourage other coaches to be assigned e.g. offensive co-ordinator, defensive co-ordinator. AFI provide coaching courses throughout the year that will allow coaches to gain certification. Volunteers are always great to have in positions such as videographers (for game review and see where to improve on) and photographers (to help with your social media presence). When it comes to players, we would recommend having game day squads of at least 10 players – flag football in Ireland is played 5v5. This allows for substitutions in instances of injury etc.
Equipment wise, you will need footballs, flags and cones (of which our partners at Football America UK sell starter packs) at a minimum. For competitive matches, all players will need jerseys that are of the same colour and style and which have numbers. Shorts with no pockets are also mandatory (to reduce the chance of injury).
We are one step closer to declaring champions as the quarter final stage has now been completed! Well done to Jonathan Hedley of the Belfast Knights who scored the most points in this round as well as in the entire championship series so far with 87. Jonathan and Killian O’Loughlin of the MU Hurricanes both won by the largest margin in this round with 52 whilst Killian, along with Ross O’Neill of the Downpatrick Saints, put on defensive masterclasses and didn’t allow their opponents to score a single point.
Be sure to follow us on Twitch (twitch.tv/americanfootball_ireland) to catch the live streams of the games!
At this stage of the tournament, only 8 clubs remain represented, each with 1 competitor left. The quarter finals saw the UL Vikings and West Dublin Rhinos bow out of the championships.
Now we enter the semi final stage, which will take place between 1pm and 5pm this Sunday (14th June). See below the match-ups for each championship!
We are delighted to announce our special guest commentators for both the semi-finals and finals of the 2020 AFI Madden Championship Series!
Gary is a former Dublin Rebel who now lives in Boston, USA. You may recognize his voice during commentary as he is the host of two podcasts; Paddy Pigskin which discusses all things football on both sides of the pond, and Barstool Biology which breaks down popular scientific topics over a beer with experts in their field.
Chris is also a former Dublin Rebel who is now a Partnered Twitch Streamer with over 10,000 followers on his channel twitch.tv/trumpetmonkey. Chris is also an EA Gamechanger and reigning Twitch Rivals Madden Superstar KO Champion!
Gary and Chris will be providing live commentary on the matches as well as chatting to players pre and post-match. Thanks to Gary and Chris for coming onboard, we can’t wait!
Round 2 saw 32 competitors fall to 16 across the two championships, with a wide array of score lines! Well done to Rory O’Dwyer of Trinity College who scored the most points with 65, to Killian O’Loughlin of the MU Hurricanes who won by the largest margin with 49 and to Chris McCallum (Belfast Trojans) and James Smyth (South Dublin Panthers) who shut out their opponents.
Be sure to follow us on Twitch (twitch.tv/americanfootball_ireland) to catch the live streams of the games!
|Playstation 4 Round 2 Results|
|UCC Raiders||James O’Driscol||14-63||Killian O'Loughlin||MU Hurricanes|
|Trinity College||Eoin Maguire||41-28||Eoin Hughes||Craigavon Cowboys|
|Cork Admirals||James Hogan||17-14||Nathan Hearty||Louth Mavericks|
|Dublin Rebels||Wello Omo||37-65||Rory O'Dwyer||Trinity College|
|Galway Warriors||Johannes Ritter||14-30||Jahn Dasini||Cork Admirals|
|Belfast Knights||Jonathan Hedley||30-7||Padraig Fitzsimons||Downpatrick Saints|
|Donegal/Derry Vipers||Mike Naulty||38-24||Alan Campbell||MU Hurricanes|
|West Dublin Rhinos||Pat Gahan||21-10||Ryan Eccles||South Dublin Panthers|
|Xbox One Round 2 Results|
|South Dublin Panthers||Matthew O'Meara||28-9||Karl Fanning||West Dublin Rhinos|
|Belfast Trojans||Conor O'Neill||23-8||Daniel Noctor||Wexford Eagles|
|MU Hurricanes||Aidan Ryan||7-35||Jamie O'Brien||UL Vikings|
|Craigavon Cowboys||Peter Loughran||0-9||Chris McCallum||Belfast Trojans|
|Belfast Knights||Paul Crothers||0-27||James Smyth||South Dublin Panthers|
|MU Hurricanes||Luke McIntyre||24-13||Peter Phillips||Causeway Giants|
|Louth Mavericks||Jack Compton||10-33||Ross O’Neill||Downpatrick Saints|
|Donegal/Derry Vipers||Darren Quinn||43-13||Anthony Morris||NI Razorbacks|
At this stage of the tournament, only Trinity College has managed to retain their initial competitors, with both making it through to the quarter finals. We bid farewell to a further 8 clubs in round 2, meaning that only 10 of the initial 22 clubs remain represented across the two championships.
|Club||Round 1*||Round 2*||Quarter Finals*|
|Cill Dara Crusaders||4||0|
|Cork City Outlaws||2||0|
|North Dublin Pirates||3||0|
|South Dublin Panthers||3||3||2|
|West Dublin Rhinos||2||2||1|
The draw for the quarter finals of both championships will take place at 9pm tomorrow night (Wednesday 3rd June 2020) on our Facebook page.
What a round one we were treated to as 64 competitors became 32 across the two championships! Well done to Jack Compton of the Louth Mavericks who scored the most points (77) and won by the largest margin (56 points) and to Padraig Fitzsimons (Downpatrick Saints), Jahn Dasini (Cork Admirals) and Luke McIntyre (MU Hurricanes) who shut out their opponents.
|Playstation 4 Round 1 Results|
|Trinity College||Eoin Maguire||33-22||Aidan Clarke||Cill Dara Crusaders|
|Galway Warriors||Colin O'Halloren||7-22||Nathan Hearty||Louth Mavericks|
|West Dublin Rhinos||Pat Gahan||33-10||Karl Tizzard||Donegal/Derry Vipers|
|South Dublin Panthers||Ryan Eccles||49-10||Pat Travers||Cill Dara Crusaders|
|MU Hurricanes||Alan Campbell||54-21||Rob Caldwell||Louth Mavericks|
|Downpatrick Saints||Padraig Fitzsimons||24-0||Ross McKenzie||Causeway Giants|
|Causeway Giants||Adam Wilson||29-36||James Hogan||Cork Admirals|
|Belfast Trojans||John McGinnis||14-38||Rory O'Dwyer||Trinity College|
|Wexford Eagles||Michael Hasset||10-28||Johannes Ritter||Galway Warriors|
|North Dublin Pirates||Shane Greaney||17-45||Mike Naulty||Donegal/Derry Vipers|
|Craigavon Cowboys||Neil Maxwell||3-42||Wello Omo||Dublin Rebels|
|Belfast Knights||Jonathan Hedley||40-7||Danny Quilter||UL Vikings|
|Craigavon Cowboys||Eoin Hughes||21-19||Niall Houlihan||UL Vikings|
|North Dublin Pirates||Daragh Maher||0-17||Jahn Dasini||Cork Admirals|
|Belfast Trojans||Max Hardy||24-38||James O’Driscol||UCC Raiders|
|MU Hurricanes||Killian O'Loughlin||28-10||Peter Murphy||UCC Raiders|
|Xbox One Round 1 Results|
|Donegal/Derry Vipers||Darren Quinn||17-13||Liam Ryan||UL Vikings|
|Antrim Jets||Odhran McCool||20-43||Matthew O'Meara||South Dublin Panthers|
|Louth Mavericks||Declan Mulvihill||14-23||Daniel Noctor||Wexford Eagles|
|NI Razorbacks||Anthony Morris||22-7||Callum McCurry||Donegal/Derry Vipers|
|Cork City Outlaws||Wolf Gallagher||24-30||Paul Crothers||Belfast Knights|
|Cork City Outlaws||Ronan McAleenan||10-24||Peter Phillips||Causeway Giants|
|Cork Admirals||Ayo Mumuni||3-19||James Smyth||South Dublin Panthers|
|Cill Dara Crusaders||Paul Furlong||21-77||Jack Compton||Louth Mavericks|
|West Dublin Rhinos||Karl Fanning||44-14||Ben Prizemam||UCC Raiders|
|Craigavon Cowboys||David McMichael||14-27||Jamie O'Brien||UL Vikings|
|Downpatrick Saints||Darren Rooney||17-27||Aidan Ryan||MU Hurricanes|
|Dublin Rebels||Ross McCooey||6-45||Conor O'Neill||Belfast Trojans|
|Belfast Knights||William Boal||11-47||Chris McCallum||Belfast Trojans|
|North Dublin Pirates||Darragh Lyons||21-28||Peter Loughran||Craigavon Cowboys|
|Cill Dara Crusaders||Jordan Farrell||6-31||Ross O’Neill||Downpatrick Saints|
|MU Hurricanes||Luke McIntyre||38-0||David King||Dublin Rebels|
Credit to the MU Hurricanes who were the most successful, with all 4 of their competitors making it through to round two, whilst the South Dublin Panthers saw their 3 entrants make it through also.
Out of the 22 clubs represented in round one, there will only be 18 represented in round two with the Cill Dara Crusaders taking the worst blow, losing all 4 of their competitors whilst the North Dublin Pirates lost all 3 of their competitors.
|Club||Round 1*||Round 2*|
|Cill Dara Crusaders||4||0|
|Cork City Outlaws||2||0|
|North Dublin Pirates||3||0|
|South Dublin Panthers||3||3|
|West Dublin Rhinos||2||2|
The draw for round two of both championships will take place at 9pm tomorrow night (Wednesday 27th May 2020) on our Facebook page.
AFI is delighted to inform you that through UK Coaching, coaches can access the online course ‘Mental Health Awareness for Sport & Physical Activity’ for free!
Usually £18, the course is accessible via the organisation’s learning and development platform and will remain free of charge until the 31 August 2020.
The mental health of the population is being challenged during this isolating time. Through this course, coaches will be able to increase their knowledge of mental health, and confidence when applying the learning into their coaching practice.
Specifically, learners will be able to:
- Welcome and support people living with mental health problems in their sport and physical activity sessions
- Increase their knowledge of mental health problems
- Apply the learning in their coaching practice
- Make their club or organisation more inclusive.
All you need to do is click here where you will be able to purchase the course for free.
American Football Ireland is delighted to announce the first AFI Madden Championship Series! There will be two championships in this series – one for PlayStation 4 players and one for Xbox One players, with Madden 20 as the chosen version of the game on both platforms. The winner of each championship will receive a €50 voucher!
Please note: this is open to AFI members only, not the general public.
How will it work?
AFI member clubs will hold their own internal club tournaments to decide a club champion for each platform (i.e. PlayStation and Xbox). The club champions will move on to the AFI Madden Championship Series, where they will face champions from other clubs in a knockout format.
We also ask for a runner up to be provided for each platform from each club, who may also make it to the AFI Madden Championship Series, depending on the number of club champions we receive. Should runners up be required, they will be selected by random draw.
The AFI Madden Championship Series will be managed by AFI and a live draw for each round will take place on Facebook. Players will then have 3 days to arrange a day and time to play and also to play the game. For example, if the draw takes place at 8pm on a Wednesday, the players will then have until 9pm Saturday of the same week to play the game – it is up to the players to arrange the game between themselves. The final will be a day and time agreed by AFI and both players.
What do we do next?
Every club administrator has been contacted by email with further information – please check your junk/spam folder if it does not appear in your inbox. Clubs will each devise their own way of determining a club champion and runner up – details of club champions and runners up must be sent to AFI no later than 6pm on Wednesday 20th May 2020. Failure to return the form by then will result in your club not participating in the championship series – late returns will also not be accepted. The live draw for the first round will take place at 9pm on Wednesday 20th May 2020.
The below is an initial list of championship series rules to help you complete your internal club competitions. AFI reserves to right the amend/remove/add to these rules.
We will be using the following rules when the championship series begins, so we recommend that you also use the same:
- Fatigue: On
- Injuries: Off
- Even Teams: Off
- Quarter Length: 6 Min.
- Game Skill: All-Pro
- Accelerated Clock: 20 Sec
- Weather: Off
Players can pick any of the 32 NFL standard teams – Pro Bowl/Ultimate Team/Any Other cannot be used. If players are using the same team, please ensure that the uniforms are different – at a very minimum, using a different jersey colour. Players are permitted to change teams for each round of the championship series.
AFI will look to have streaming capabilities in place by 20th May. Further communication on this will follow.
Players are expected to show good conduct at all times. Any threatening behaviour, foul language, or any unsportsmanlike conduct may result in disqualification from the championship series.
Any disputes will be determined by the AFI Board and the decision will be final.
Statement from AFI Commissioner Brian Cleary “The AFI board held an online meeting to discuss the current ongoing situation and the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak.
It has been decided that the 2020 Senior Kitted season will be cancelled in its entirety. A number of factors were considered in making this tough decision. There remains uncertainty as to when this crisis will end, which makes it very difficult to publish a schedule that will allow for enough time to prepare and complete a season for our members. It may also prove very difficult to secure ambulance bookings for fixtures due to the increased workload of our front-line services. We are also very aware of the financial difficulties our clubs and members may be facing during this time and do not wish to add any more pressure than what they are already facing. Ultimately, we need to put our members physical and mental welfare first before football.
We will continue to monitor the situation and, if circumstances allow, we are open to the possibility of hosting a 2-3 week tournament at the end of the summer for clubs that wish to participate and have some form of kitted football in 2020.
With immediate effect all current Adult Kitted, Coaching, Officiating and Non-Playing memberships will be extended until 30th September 2021 and there will be no need to purchase or renew your membership for the 2021 season.
No decision has been made yet in relation to Youth and Flag football. We will continue to monitor the situation and liaise with our directors in the coming weeks and update you when we have a clearer picture on the possibility of the Youth and Flag seasons going ahead.
It is important to note that we have put our insurance on hold at this time and under no circumstances is any physical footballing activity to take place until further notice.
Please look after yourselves and your loved ones and we will continue to provide updates as the situation unfolds. If you have any queries please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Statement from AFI Commissioner Brian Cleary
“In light of this mornings announcement by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, AFI have decided to postpone all football activities including practice sessions, scheduled games and combines up to and including the 29th March.
We will continue to monitor the situation over the coming weeks and keep you updated on any plans to reschedule the season.
We have a few options to consider including a new, reduced schedule commencing end of April/start of May. We may also consider all postponed games as 15-15 ties as per the bylaws. We need further time to consider the options and want to be fair to all clubs for the remainder of the season.
We urge all our members to follow the advice of the HSE in an effort to contain this outbreak and hope you and your families all stay safe and well.”
The AFI board of management is delighted to confirm that the 2020 AFI Division 1 and Division 2 Bowl games will be a double header event on Sunday 2nd August and will take place at the excellent facilities of Navan RFC.
Navan RFC have previously hosted a number of AFI events including the Irish Wolfhounds vs Belgium Barbarians game in 2018. Further details of the day will follow in due course.