In a first for AFL New Zealand, the game will be an addition to the calendar and provide a solid contest for players currently playing at the highest level. Following a three year hiatus in the International calendar., the match is the perfect opportunity to impact on the pecking order of a once strongly established New Zealand Falcons squad.
The match against the New Zealand Falcons will take place on Sunday April 23rd at 1.15pm at North Harbour Stadium, following the completion of the 2023 AFL New Zealand Premiership season.
Central Giants and former New Zealand Falcons forward, Logan Toomer will lead the AFL New Zealand All Stars in their inaugural match. He will be joined in the leadership group by Wellington AFL’s Tyson Sholl and young gun Joey Alesich. A number of team leaders from League and Club level through out New Zealand appear in a line up that will place pressure on the Falcons team that historically have had there names pencilled in for International Cup contention.
The All Stars team will provide increased opportunities for;
- New Zealand based Australians who reside in New Zealand but may not be eligible for New Zealand selection.
- Young players looking to push for future New Zealand Falcons selection.
- Senior players who have yet to experience international competition.
From a coaching perspective the opportunity for the best 40 players within New Zealand to come together to do battle in this first ever clash is extremely beneficial for all concerned. The level of football will be the highest that new players have experienced along with providing some great insights for International Cup selection. The 2024 International Cup is scheduled to take place in Maroochydore Queensland and is now only 17 months.
The youthful line up including Academy graduates Will Anderson, Joseph Cole, Jevaan Croft, Reef Bainbridge, Kade Riddell and Baillee Laurenson-Tupai will be looking to utilise their running abilities to pressure the Falcons in the first ever clash.
The All Stars concept will continue to be developed with Trans Tasman interest providing adequate opportunities for the teams schedule to grow. The Allstars has its similarities to Rugby’s Barbarians and will complement the events schedule of the New Zealand Falcons.
Game Day will feature the presentation of jumpers to both the Falcons and All Stars teams as well as an After Match Function following the game. Details will be provided in the coming days.
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