West Coast Eagles
The West Coast Eagles known as West Coast or the Eagles, is a Australian rules football club playing in the Australian Football League. Based in Perth, Western Australia, it represents the Perth metropolitan region. Though this makes no sense because there is no place in Perth called West Coast, it trains at Lathlain Park and plays its home games at Perth Stadium known as Optus Stadium, in Burswood, having played at Subiaco Oval and the WACA Ground. The club is one of two AFL clubs based in Western Australia, the other being its main rival, the Fremantle Football Club. Andrew Gaff is a player of the Eagles and called a criminal by many after punching a Fremantle Dockers player in the face, breaking his jaw and ruining many opportunities for that season. West Coast was founded in 1986 as an expansion team, it entered the AFL known as the Victorian Football League, in 1987 along with Queensland's Brisbane Bears. It reached the finals series for the first time in 1988, won its first premiership in 1992, having been defeated in the grand final the previous year.
It is the first non-Victorian team to win a grand final. The Eagles have since won three more premierships, in 1994, 2006 and 2018; the club is coached by Adam Simpson and captained by Shannon Hurn. From 2013 to 2018, the East Perth Football Club, which competes in the West Australian Football League, served as West Coast's reserves team. From 2019 the Eagles will field a reserves team in the WAFL; the Eagles have won the second most premierships in the AFL era and are one of the most supported and financially dominant clubs in the league. The West Coast Eagles were selected in 1986 as one of two expansion teams to enter the Victorian Football League the following season, along with the Brisbane Bears. Ron Alexander was appointed as the team's inaugural coach in September 1986, with the inaugural squad, comprising a majority of players from the West Australian Football League, unveiled in late October. Ross Glendinning, recruited from North Melbourne, was made the club's first captain as one of the few players with previous VFL experience.
The team's first senior match in the VFL was played against Richmond at Subiaco Oval in late March 1987, with West Coast defeating Richmond by 14 points. Having won eleven games and lost eleven games for the season, the club finished eighth out of fourteen teams. At the end of the season, John Todd, the coach of Swan Districts in the WAFL, replaced Alexander as West Coast's coach; the club made the finals for the first time in 1988, but lost form the following season, winning only seven games to finish 11th on the ladder. Todd was sacked at the end of the 1989 season, was replaced by Michael Malthouse, who had coached Footscray. With the competition having rebranded itself as the Australian Football League at the start of the 1990 season, West Coast finished third on the ladder at the conclusion of the home-and-away season, progressed to the preliminary final before losing to Essendon, having been forced to play four consecutive finals in Melbourne. John Worsfold replaced Steve Malaxos as captain for the 1991 season, the club finished the season as minor premiers for the first time, losing only three games.
In the finals series, West Coast progressed to the grand final, but were defeated by Hawthorn by 53 points. Peter Sumich kicking 111 goals during the season, becoming the first West Coast player to reach a century of goals, as well as the first-ever left-footer. In 1992, West Coast finished fourth on the ladder, but again progressed to the grand final, defeating Geelong by 28 points to become the first team based outside Victoria to win a premiership. Having slipped to third in 1993, the club finished as minor premiers the following season, went on to again defeat Geelong in the grand final to win its second premiership in three years. In 1995, a second AFL team based in Western Australia, the Fremantle Football Club, with the two clubs' subsequent rivalry branded as the "Western Derby". West Coast made the finals in every year that remained in the 1990s, but failed to reach another grand final, with a fourth-place finish in 1996 their best result. Worsfold retired at the end of the 1998 season, was replaced by his vice-captain, Guy McKenna, who served as captain until his retirement two seasons later.
Malthouse left West Coast at the end of the 1999 season to take up the senior coaching position with Collingwood, was replaced by Ken Judge, coach of Hawthorn. The 2000 and 2001 seasons were marked by a rapid decrease in form after the loss of several key senior players, culminating in a 14th-place in 2001, at the time the worst in the club's history. Round eighteen of the 2000 season marked the club's final match at the WACA Ground, used concurrently with Subiaco Oval since the club's inception. Judge was sacked at the end of 2001, replaced by the club's former captain John Worsfold, serving as assistant coach at Carlton; the club made the finals in 2002, 2003, 2004, but each time failed to progress past the elimination final. Ben Cousins was made sole captain of the club in 2002, having shared the role with Dean Kemp the previous season. During this time, the team was boosted by a number of high picks in the AFL Draft gained as a result of the previous poor finishes. Chris Judd, taken with pick three in the 2001 National Draft, won the Brownlow Medal as the best player in the competition in 2004, becoming the first West Coast player to win the award.
In 2005, the Eagles finished second on the ladder after the regular season, progressed to the grand final against Sydney, where the
London Youth Games
The London Youth Games is an annual multi-sport event held in London, England. The London Youth Games offer competitive opportunities for young participants aged 7 to 18 across 30 sports; the London Youth Games are contested between the 32 London boroughs and take place at venues around the capital all year round, with the focal point being a finals weekend at the National Sports Centre in Crystal Palace. The finals weekend traditionally takes place on the first weekend in July and they are free and open to all young people living in or going to school in London. Over 125,000 young Londoners take part in the London Youth Games, making it the largest annual youth sports event in Europe; the London Youth Games are delivered by London's local authorities, several NGBs and over 2,000 volunteers each year. A small team of full-time staff help to co-ordinate the LYG volunteering programme' GamesForce' which, together with volunteering agencies, help recruit and provide opportunities in media, sports and team leadership for persons aged 16 and above at the London Youth Games.
The London Youth Games is funded by Balfour Beatty, Sport England National Lottery, Thames Water among others. The London Youth Games are organised and managed by the London Youth Games Foundation, a registered charity. Representatives from the London boroughs and a number of independent trustees make up the Board of trustees; the London Youth Games is launched as one of two major sporting events to mark the Silver Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. The first Games were held that same year at the National Sports Centre at Crystal Palace, where it has remained since. After a year away, the Games returned in 1979 and continued to grow through the early 1980s with the introduction of more sports and a rise in the number of competitors. London Youth Games Ltd is created in 1985 to cater for the growth and complexity of the organisation dedicated to running the London Youth Games and other London sports events for young people; the 1986 London Youth Games sees the introduction of a water sports regatta at the Royal Albert and Victoria Docks.
To celebrate its 10th anniversary, the 1987 London Youth Games features in cycling's Milk Race and the cross-country championships are introduced to the Games programme. In 1994, BAA Heathrow becomes first title sponsor of the London Youth Games which are renamed' The London Heathrow Youth Games'; the Mini Games event for Londoners under the age of 11 is introduced. The Indoor Cricket Cup is set up in 1996. A record 20,000 children take part in the 1998 London Youth Games; the regatta is revamped in 1999 with the introduction of separate competitions in canoeing and rowing. Events for disabled athletes, swimming and girls rugby union are introduced. A four-day national Youth Games final of the winning teams from all 43 Area Youth Games in the UK takes place in Southampton in August 2000. London sends two squads to represent them at'The BAA Millennium Youth Games' in the 12 sports competitions; the London Youth Games reach their 25th anniversary in 2001 with GB Olympic diver Tony Ally among its promoters.
The Queen, accompanied by her husband Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, visit the London Youth Games Mini Games at Crystal Palace on 4 July as part of her Golden Jubilee Tour in 2002. She presents winners medals. London Youth Games establishes its own website. A festival stage with a big screen, 95.8 Capital FM and the Royal Navy entertain crowds at the 2003 London Youth Games finals weekend. The 2004 London Youth Games are launched by former boxing champion Michael Watson and showcase the London 2012 bid during the launch and at the finals weekend. London Youth Games competitor Amber Charles 14, is chosen as a youth ambassador for the bid. Participants greet the Athens Olympic Flame. BAA Heathrow's sponsorship of the Games ends in 2005 and a new public sector funding secured the London Youth Games' future with long-term funding from Sport England London and the Greater London Authority. Balfour Beatty announces a six-year association with the London Youth Games in 2006, they sign as a title sponsor until 2013 and the London Youth Games are renamed' The Balfour Beatty London Youth Games'.
British long-distance runner Mo Farah light the games torch at the opening ceremony of the 2007 London Youth Games. The London Youth Games celebrate the 500,000th competitor in its history in 2009; the London Youth Games gets its first patron with former competitor, Chicago Bulls and GB basketball captain Luol Deng and the London Youth Games Hall of Fame is launched with six former participants inducted. In 2010, the London Youth Games hit a record 50,000 competitors and became the largest annual youth sports event in Europe. Olympic 400m runner Christine Ohuruogu was the 2010 London Youth Games patron. Six more alumni were inducted into the Hall of Fame. Foxy was introduced as the official London Youth Games mascot. 2011 was another record year for the London Youth Games, as over 71,000 youngsters compete across 30 sports, with Richmond taking home the Jubilee Trophy. England women's footballer Rachel Yankey was the patron of that year's Games, was inducted into the 2011 Hall of Fame along with skier Chemmy Alcott, Paralympic swimmer Elaine Barrett, triathlete Tim Don, high jumper Dalton Grant, squash player Paul Johnson.2012 saw the London Youth Games introduce a whole new raft of school competitions in line with the national School Games pathway and hosted the inaugural finals at Crystal Palace in March.
Hounslow took home the Schools Shield. Games alumni Zoe Smith and David Weir were joint patrons for a record-breaking year at the London Youth Games. In Olympi
Variations of Australian rules football
Variations of Australian rules football are games or activities based on or similar to the game of Australian rules football, in which the player uses common Australian rules football skills. They range in player numbers from 2 up to the minimum 38 required for a full Australian rules football; some are identical to Australian rules football, with only minor rule changes, while others are more distant and arguably not simple variations but distinct games. Others still have adapted to the unavailability of full-sized cricket fields. Other variations include children's games, contests or activities intended to help the player practice or reinforce skills, which may or may not have a competitive aspect. Most of the variations are played in informal settings, without the presence of umpires and sometimes without strict adherence to official game rules. Auskick is a national program in Australia to develop and promote participation in Australian rules football amongst children, it has proven to be popular with both girls.
The program, devised in 1998 and begun in Victoria under the name "Vickick", it was supported by the Australian Football League, the national professional competition for the sport, which began to roll it out nationally. It has seen variations overseas, including Viking Kick. Women's Australian rules football is a fast-growing sport. Although it is a contact sport, women's Australian rules is sometimes played with modified rules, it is less brutal on the body than women's American football, women's rugby league or women's rugby union and offers more physicality than women's soccer, as well as requiring both hand and foot co-ordination. It is played by women of all shapes and sizes; the game is played at senior level in Australia, the United States, New Zealand and Japan. At junior level, it is played in Papua New Guinea and South Africa. At schoolgirls level, it is played in Tonga and Samoa. Masters Australian Football is a sport based on Australian rules football for players aged 35 years and over.
The sport first commenced on 21 September 1981, after being founded by John Hammer in 1980 in Nhill, Victoria. Modifications to the rules reduce the physical impact of the game for older players, it is played by over 119 teams around the world. The variation to the game is dubbed "Superfools" by some followers and players. Lightning football is a generic term to describe variations of the game played over a shortened length about half of the length of a full match. Lightning football may be played under otherwise unchanged rules, but in recent lightning matches staged by the AFL, experimental rules such as awarding a free kick against the last player to touch the ball before it goes out of bounds have been trialled. Lightning matches are used at junior or amateur level, to play an entire tournament inside a single day or weekend; these tournaments are known as "lightning premierships" or "lightning carnivals". 9-a-side Footy is played informally by Aussie Rules clubs but not yet an official sport in its own right.
9-a-side games are sometimes played on half size fields that are rectangular with 9 players on the field at any one time consisting of three forwards, three backs and three centre players. Two games are played at the same time on a single Australian rules or cricket field. At other times, 9-a-side makes use of the full space of the field when a full complement of players is not available; this variety is a running variety of Australian rules. A minimum of 18 players are required in total. Rules are the same as Australian rules football. Limited and non-contact versions of 9-a-side football are played by both men's and women's leagues. Examples of official tournaments held under these rules include the EU Bali Nines. Samoa Rules is a game derived from Australian rules football, played in Samoa; the game is played on rugby fields and each team consists of 15 players per side. Unlike Australian rules football, player movement is restricted to zones. There is a line across the centre that forwards can not cross.
Onballers are allowed to go anywhere. The Vailima Six-Shooters' Championship began in Samoa in 1998 under these rules, becoming known as "Samoa Rules". A number of Samoa Rules players went on to represent Samoa in the Samoan national Australian rules football team, known as the "Bulldogs". Metro Footy is a modified version of Australian rules football rules played on gridiron football, rugby or Association football fields, predominantly in the United States of America; the reasons for the development of Metro Footy was due to there being few grounds large enough for traditional Australian rules matches, but to allow competitive football to be played with smaller playing numbers, allowing for better recruitment possibilities. Teams consist of 9-a-side on a 110 x 50 metre field; the teams that play feed into larger 18-a-side Australian rules representative teams that participate in leagues such as the MAAFL or tournaments such as the USAFL National Championships and provide the opportunity to introduce new American players to the game of Australian rules football.
Several clubs from the United States Australian Football League participate in Metro Footy. Another prominent variation of the game is AFLX, an official Australian Football League sanctioned pre-season event; the game is played on soccer-sized pitch
Australian Football League
The Australian Football League is the pre-eminent professional competition of Australian rules football. Through the AFL Commission, the AFL serves as the sport's governing body, is responsible for controlling the laws of the game; the league was founded as the Victorian Football League as a breakaway from the previous Victorian Football Association, with its inaugural season commencing in 1897. Comprising only teams based in the Australian state of Victoria, the competition's name was changed to the Australian Football League for the 1990 season, after expanding to other states throughout the 1980s; the league consists of 18 teams spread over five of Australia's six states. Matches have been played in all states and mainland territories of Australia, as well as in New Zealand and China to promote the sport abroad; the AFL season consists of a pre-season competition, followed by a 23-round regular season, which runs during the Australian winter. The team with the best record after the home-and-away series is awarded the "minor premiership."
The top eight teams play off in a four-round finals series, culminating in the AFL Grand Final, held at the Melbourne Cricket Ground each year. The grand final winner is termed the "premiers", is awarded the premiership cup; the current premiers are the West Coast Eagles. The Victorian Football Association was established in 1877 and went on to become Victoria's major Australian rules football competition. During the 1890s, an off-field power struggle occurred between the VFA's stronger and weaker clubs, the former seeking greater administrative control commensurate with their relative financial contribution to the game; this came to a head in 1896 when it was proposed that gate profits, which were always lower in matches involving the weaker clubs, be shared amongst all teams in the VFA. After it was intimated that the proposal would be put to a vote, six of the strongest clubs—Collingwood, Fitzroy, Geelong and South Melbourne—seceded from the VFA, invited Carlton and St Kilda to join them in founding a new competition, the Victorian Football League.
The remaining VFA clubs—Footscray, North Melbourne, Port Melbourne and Williamstown—were given the opportunity to compete as a junior sides at a level beneath the VFL, but rejected the offer and remained for the 1897 VFA season. The VFL's inaugural season occurred in 1897, it made several innovations early on to entice the public's interest, including an annual finals tournament, rather than awarding the premiership to the team with the best record through the season. Although the VFL and the VFA continued to compete for spectator interest for many years, the VFL established itself as the premier competition in Victoria. In 1908, the league expanded to ten teams, with Richmond crossing from the VFA and University Football Club from the Metropolitan Football Association. University, after three promising seasons, finished last each year from 1911 until 1914, including losing 51 matches in a row; as a result, the club withdrew from the VFL at the end of 1914. Beginning sporadically during the late 1890s and from 1907 until World War I, the VFL premier and the premier of the South Australian Football League met in a playoff match for the Championship of Australia.
South Australia's Port Adelaide was the most successful club of the competition winning three titles during the period along with an earlier victory. In 1925, the VFL expanded from nine teams to twelve, with Footscray and North Melbourne each crossing from the VFA. North Melbourne and Hawthorn remained weak in the VFL for a long period. Although North Melbourne would become the first of the 1925 expansion sides to reach a Grand Final in 1950 it was Footscray that adapted to the VFL with the most ease of the three clubs, by 1928 were well off the bottom of the ladder. Between the years of 1927 and 1930, Collingwood became the first, only VFL team, to win four successive Premierships. In 1952, the VFL hosted ` National Day'. Matches were played at the Sydney Cricket Ground, Brisbane Exhibition Ground, North Hobart Oval, Albury Sports Ground and Victorian country towns Yallourn and Euroa. Footscray became the first of the 1925 expansion teams to win the premiership in 1954. Melbourne became a powerhouse during the 1950s and early 1960s under coach Norm Smith and star player Ron Barassi.
The club contested seven consecutive grand finals from 1954 to 1960, winning five premierships, including three in a row from 1955 to 1957. Television coverage began with direct telecasts of the final quarter permitted. At first, several channels competed through broadcasting different games. However, when the VFL found that television was reducing crowds, it decided that no coverage was to be allowed for 1960. In 1961, replays were introduced although direct telecasts were permitted in Melbourne. In 1959, the VFL planned the first purpose built mega-stadium, VFL Park, to give it some independence from the Melbourne Crick
Fremantle Football Club
The Fremantle Football Club, nicknamed the Dockers, is a professional Australian rules football team that competes in the Australian Football League. The club represents and was based in the port city of Fremantle at the mouth of the Swan River in Western Australia and now has their training and headquarters at Cockburn ARC in Cockburn Central. In 1995 it became the second team from Western Australia after the West Coast Eagles to be admitted to the AFL, honouring the rich footballing tradition and history associated with Fremantle. High-profile players since the club's inception include former captain and six time All-Australian Matthew Pavlich, 2015 Brownlow Medallist Nat Fyfe, the league's tallest player Aaron Sandilands, Peter Bell, Shaun McManus, former number one draft pick Clive Waterhouse, winners of the AFL Rising Star award Paul Hasleby and Rhys Palmer, Jeff Farmer, David Mundy, Michael Johnson, Luke McPharlin, Ryan Crowley and Hayden Ballantyne; the club is coached by Ross Lyon following the sacking of Mark Harvey at the end of the 2011 AFL home and away season.
Fremantle is one of only three active clubs that has not won a premiership during its time in the AFL, however it did win the minor premiership in 2015, reached the 2013 AFL Grand Final which it lost to Hawthorn. Fremantle has had a team in the AFL Women's league since its inception in 2017, they are captained by Kara Donnellan. The port city of Fremantle has long been a stronghold of Australian rules football in Western Australia, hosting the state's first game in 1881; the East Fremantle and South Fremantle Football Clubs dominated the early years of the West Australian Football League, winning 24 of the first 34 premierships. Since 1897, Fremantle Oval has been the main venue for Australian rules football matches in the city; the AFL match attendance record in Western Australia remained unchallenged at 52,781 at Perth's Subiaco Oval for the 1979 WANFL Grand Final between East Fremantle and South Fremantle, until this was broken in 2018 at Perth Stadium. Champion players who forged careers playing for Fremantle-based clubs include, among many others, Steve Marsh, Jack Sheedy, John Todd, George Doig, William Truscott and Bernie Naylor.
Negotiations between East Fremantle and South Fremantle to enter into the VFL as a merged club began in 1987. However, due to an exclusive rights clause granted to the West Coast Eagles this would be impossible until the end of the 1992 season. Further applications were made by the clubs to join but their model was out of favour with the West Australian Football Commission; the AFL announced on 14 December 1993 that a new team, to be based in Fremantle, would enter the league in 1995. The names "Fremantle Football Club", "Fremantle Dockers" and the club colours of purple, red and white were announced on 12 July 1994; the decision to base the new club in Fremantle was due to the long association of Australian rules football in Fremantle. However, it was not represented in a national club competition until 1995, eight years after the first expansion of the Victorian Football League into Western Australia in 1987 with the creation of the West Coast Eagles, their first training session was held on 31 October 1994 at Fremantle Oval.
The team endured some tough years near the bottom of the premiership ladder, until they finished fifth after the home and away rounds in 2003 and made the finals for the first time. The elimination final against eighth-placed Essendon at Subiaco Oval was the club's biggest game, but ended in disappointment for the home team, with the finals experience of Essendon proving too strong for the young team, they missed making the finals in the following two seasons, finishing both years with 11 wins, 11 losses and only 1 game outside the top eight. After an average first half to the 2006 AFL season, Fremantle finished the year with a club-record nine straight wins to earn themselves third position at the end of the home and away season with a club-best 15 wins. In the qualifying final against Adelaide at AAMI Stadium, the Dockers led for the first three quarters before being overrun by the Crows; the following week saw the club win its first finals game in the semi-final against Melbourne at Subiaco Oval.
The club subsequently earned a trip to Sydney to play in its first preliminary final, where they lost by 35 points at ANZ Stadium to the Sydney Swans. In 2007, following Chris Connolly's resignation midway through the season, Mark Harvey, a three-time premiership player with Essendon, was appointed caretaker coach for the club. During his seven matches for 2007, Harvey coached the Dockers to three losses; the club came 11th that year, Harvey was appointed full-time coach at the end of the season. The following year saw the club slump to 14th. In Round 15, 2009, Fremantle recorded the lowest score in its history and of the 2000s, scoring only 1.7 to the Adelaide Crows' 19.16. It scored just one point in the only goal scored came in the third quarter. After finishing sixth in 2010, the club played in the finals for the first time since 2006; the team played Hawthorn at Subiaco Oval, despite being considered underdogs, went on to win by 30 points. The win came from strong performances from Luke McPharlin and Adam McPhee who limited the impact of Lance Franklin and Luke Hodge, respectively.
The team's second win in a finals match qualified them for a semi-final to be played against the Geelong Cats at the MCG the following week. In a one-sided contest, Geelong won by 69 points; the 2011 season saw Fremantle lose just once in the first six rounds before ending the year in 11th position after losing their final seven games. Fremantl
Australian rules football
Australian rules football known as Australian football, or called Aussie rules, football or footy, is a contact sport played between two teams of eighteen players on an oval-shaped field a modified cricket ground. Points are scored by kicking the oval-shaped ball between behind posts. During general play, players may position themselves anywhere on the field and use any part of their bodies to move the ball; the primary methods are kicking and running with the ball. There are rules on how the ball can be handled: for example, players running with the ball must intermittently bounce or touch it on the ground. Throwing the ball is not allowed and players must not get caught holding the ball. A distinctive feature of the game is the mark, where players anywhere on the field who catch the ball from a kick are awarded possession. Possession of the ball is in dispute at all times except when mark is paid. Players can use their whole body to obstruct opponents. Dangerous physical contact, interference when marking and deliberately slowing the play are discouraged with free kicks, distance penalties or suspension for a certain number of matches, depending on the seriousness of the infringement.
The game features frequent physical contests, spectacular marking, fast movement of both players and the ball and high scoring. The sport's origins can be traced to football matches played in Melbourne, Victoria in 1858, inspired by English public school football games. Seeking to develop a game more suited to adults and Australian conditions, the Melbourne Football Club published the first laws of Australian football in May 1859, making it the oldest of the world's major football codes. Australian football has the highest spectator attendance and television viewership of all sports in Australia, while the Australian Football League, the sport's only professional competition, is the nation's wealthiest sporting body; the AFL Grand Final, held annually at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, is the highest attended club championship event in the world. The sport is played at amateur level in many countries and in several variations, its rules are governed by the AFL Commission with the advice of the AFL's Laws of the Game Committee.
Australian rules football is known by several nicknames, including Aussie rules and footy. In some regions, it is marketed as AFL after the Australian Football League. There is evidence of football being played sporadically in the Australian colonies in the first half of the 19th century. Compared to cricket and horse racing, football was viewed as a minor "amusement" at the time, while little is known about these early one-off games, it is clear they share no causal link with Australian football. In 1858, in a move that would help to shape Australian football in its formative years, "public" schools in Melbourne, Victoria began organising football games inspired by precedents at English public schools; the earliest such match, held in St Kilda on 15 June, was between Melbourne Grammar and St Kilda Grammar. On 10 July 1858, the Melbourne-based Bell's Life in Victoria and Sporting Chronicle published a letter by Tom Wills, captain of the Victoria cricket team, calling for the formation of a "foot-ball club" with a "code of laws" to keep cricketers fit during winter.
Born in Australia, Wills played a nascent form of rugby football whilst a pupil at Rugby School in England, returned to his homeland a star athlete and cricketer. His letter is regarded by many historians as giving impetus for the development of a new code of football today known as Australian football. Two weeks Wills' friend, cricketer Jerry Bryant, posted an advertisement for a scratch match at the Richmond Paddock adjoining the Melbourne Cricket Ground; this was the first of several "kickabouts" held that year involving members of the Melbourne Cricket Club, including Wills, Bryant, W. J. Hammersley and J. B. Thompson. Trees were used as goalposts and play lasted an entire afternoon. Without an agreed upon code of laws, some players were guided by rules they had learned in the British Isles, "others by no rules at all". Another significant milestone in 1858 was a match played under experimental rules between Melbourne Grammar and Scotch College, held at the Richmond Paddock; this 40-a-side contest, umpired by Wills and Scotch College teacher John Macadam, began on 7 August and continued over two subsequent Saturdays, ending in a draw with each side kicking one goal.
It is commemorated with a statue outside the MCG, the two schools have competed annually since in the Cordner-Eggleston Cup, the world's oldest continuous football competition. Since the early 20th century, it has been suggested that Australian football was derived from the Irish sport of Gaelic football, not codified until 1885. There is no archival evidence in favour of a Gaelic influence, the style of play shared between the two modern codes was evident in Australia long before the Irish game evolved in a similar direction. Another theory, first proposed in 1983, posits that Wills, having grown up amongst Aborigines in Victoria, may have seen or played the Aboriginal game of Marn Grook, incorporated some of its features into early Australian football; the evidence for this is only circumstantial, according to biographer Greg de Moore's research, Wills was "almost influenced by his experience at Rugby School". A loosely organised Melbourne side, captained by Wills, played against other football enthusiasts in the winter and spring of 1858.
The following year, on 14 May, the Melbourne Football Club came into being, making it one of the