Anzac Day AFL in France

Over the 2016 Anzac Day weekend, the 8th annual Anzac Cup took place in Villers-Bretonneux, France. This is an AFL match between France and Australia celebrating the connection established between Australians and the town of Villers-Bretonneux, formed when our Australian soldiers reclaimed the town from the Germans on April 25 1918, at a great personal loss. The town was covered in Australian flags and paraphernalia and the teams were welcomed with open arms. This year saw the first ever women's match, with both the Australian men and women's sides taking on the French. Cromwell old girl Hayley 'Scootin' Canton (2010-12) was selected to represent Australia after taking up AFL on her move to London 18 months ago, where she plays for Wandsworth Demons. After hard fought matches, both Australian teams were successful with the women winning 107 to 5. Following the match both nations were hosted at the town hall for a home cooked hog roast and presentations. It was a fantastic way to foster relationships between the two countries, and a fun night was had by all. Over the weekend the teams visited the local war memorials and paid tribute to those who lost their lives. All players were taken in by local host families who showed amazing hospitality and warmth. The weekend finished with a Dawn Service at the Villers- Bretonneux memorial on Monday, which was attended by our Governor General Peter Cosgrove. The weekend was a truly incredible experience, and was organised and executed by Cromwell old boy Ben 'Husky' Durance (2010-12) and his colleagues at AFL Europe.