2014 International Rules Series
The 2014 International Rules Series (officially the 2014 Virgin Australia International Rules Test) was contested between Gaelic footballers from Ireland and Australian footballers from Australia. The 18th series of international rules football since the concept's inception in 1984, Ireland entered as defending champions, with Australia seeking their first series win since 2010. The match was played at Perth's Patersons Stadium on Saturday 22 November.
|Event||International Rules Series|
|Australia won by 10 points|
|Date||22 November 2014|
|Venue||Patersons Stadium, Perth, Western Australia|
|Man of the Match||Luke Hodge (Australia)|
|Man of the Match||Conor McManus (Ireland)|
|Referee||Simon Meredith (Australia) |
Marty Duffy (Ireland)
Unlike previous years, the series was reduced to a single one-off test match, which Australia won 56-46 to record their first series win in four years and the Cormac McAnallen Cup. The win also levelled the overall series wins between the two sides at 9-9. Selection eligibility was again altered for the Australian team, with only players previously selected in an All-Australian team eligible to represent Australia.
For the first time since 2004 only players selected for any All-Australian team were eligible for selection to represent Australia. The change was made so as to attempt to boost public interest in the series. In April 2014, the AFL announced that 2008 and 2013 Hawthorn premiership coach Alastair Clarkson would coach the Australian side and that Collingwood club president and public figure Eddie McGuire would take on the promotional role of Chef de Mission. McGuire stated of the series a need to recapture the prestige associated with playing for Australia; "putting the coat of arms over our hearts again to take on the Irish ... we'll turn this into something special. We will make sure only the very best players will be picked in the first place and that they will be desperate to play".
In July 2014, AFL executives announced that Fremantle 2013 Grand Final coach Ross Lyon would be Australia's assistant coach for the test match and that multiple All-Australian players Luke Hodge, Scott Pendlebury, Joel Selwood and Patrick Dangerfield had committed to representing Australia. The league subsequently announced that Geelong premiership coach Chris Scott would join the coaching panel as a second assistant coach. The Australian jersey for the test match was announced on 4 October, with the inclusion of the green and gold v-design a significant point of difference from previous designs. In November, three-time premiership player and Geelong captain Joel Selwood was selected as captain of the Australian team.
The squad was announced in October 2014. Due to the eligibility criteria of having been selected for an All-Australian team, Brownlow medalist Matt Priddis couldn't be selected. Star trio of Gary Ablett, Lance Franklin and Scott Pendlebury were notable absentees, being ruled out because of injuries. Fremantle best and fairest Nat Fyfe, originally selected for the test match, was ruled out of the match after sustaining a shoulder injury during Australia's warm up win over a New South Wales Gaelic football team. The Australian team and the series itself was sponsored chiefly by airline company Virgin Australia, with the company logo featuring prominently on the Australian team jersey. The Seven Network and its digital multichannel 7mate broadcast the match in Australia and Sommet Sports broadcast the match in New Zealand.
Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) president Liam O'Neill announced in April 2014 that former Roscommon footballer Paul Earley would once again serve as manager and coach of the Irish team, joined by a back room team identical to the 2013 series, including Tony Scullion (Derry), Seamus McCarthy (Tipperary), Jarlath Fallon (Galway) and Nicholas Walsh (Cavan/GWS Giants). The Irish team will be sponsored on the team jersey and sports kits by live stream service GAAGO. Irish language TV network TG4 will broadcast the test match live into Ireland.
Ireland plan without reigning Footballer of the Year Michael Darragh MacAuley (broken finger) and last year's Player of the Series Ciarán Sheehan, who is tied to AFL club Carlton. Last year's captain Michael Murphy and fellow 2014 All-Ireland finalists with Donegal, Patrick McBrearty and Neil McGee, all returned.
The Irish touring squad was announced on 28 October 2014. Donegal's All-Ireland winning captain Michael Murphy was again selected for the role of captain of the national team, while Cork's Aidan Walsh was selected as vice-captain. In total, 15 counties are included across the 25 man squad, Mayo leading the way with four Irish-based players and Brisbane Lions prolific back-man Pearce Hanley being the only AFL player selected in the side. All-Ireland champions Kerry feature only one member in the team.
It was announced that several rule changes would be made for the 2014 test match so as to accommodate key position Australian players seeking opportunity to compete. In July 2014, the AFL and GAA introduced several rule changes:
- Number of consecutive hand-passes teams are allowed increased from four to six
- Interchange rotations increased from 10 to 15 a quarter (unlimited rotations allowed at quarter and half time breaks)
- A mark no longer paid for a backwards kick
- Goalkeepers required to kick the ball out beyond the 45m line after all wides, behinds and overs
- Failure of a goalkeeper to kick over the 45m line will result in a free kick to the opposition (from the 45m line)
|2014 International Rules Test|
|Saturday 22 November (5.45pm AWT)||Australia||def.||Ireland||Patersons Stadium, Perth (Crowd: 38,262)||Report |
|Umpires: Simon Meredith (Australia) |
Marty Duffy (Ireland)
Television broadcast: Seven Network/7mate (Aus)
Sommet Sports (NZ)
|Nil||Goals||Hughes, N. Smith (Australia - Own Goal)|
|Johnson 4, Riewoldt 3, Wingard 3, McVeigh 2, Harvey, Gray, Selwood, Jack, Breust||Overs||McManus 4, Begley 2, Donnelly, McKernan, Murphy|
|Hodge, Mitchell, Johnson, Riewoldt, Watson, Fletcher||Best||McManus, Begley, Moran, Murphy, Donnelly|
- Meredith: 'Unders' could get Ireland over the line against Aussies
- "Rules Test is a sell out". Archived from the original on 23 March 2015. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- See here for confirmation
- Big names, rule tweaks to put the "prestige" back into International rules
- Irish Invention! Eddie McGuire and Shane Warne to revive International Rules? Archived 2015-09-24 at the Wayback Machine
- Ireland warm up with win over VFL team Archived 2014-11-18 at the Wayback Machine
- Fyfe out of Rules test
- All Australian reps only for International Rules
- Australia and Ireland to play IR series again Archived 2015-09-24 at the Wayback Machine
- Lyon joins International Rules as assistant
- AFL name Chris Scott to help Aussie team
- 2014 Australian International Rules jumper decided
- Selwood to skipper Aussies against Ireland
- Quartermaine, Braden (8 October 2014). "Nic Naitanui and Nat Fyfe headline Australian team for International Rules clash with Ireland". Perth Now. Archived from the original on 14 October 2014. Retrieved 8 October 2014.
- Malcolm, Alex; Schmook, Nathan (8 October 2014). "Cream of the crop: All-star team named to face the Irish". AFL.com.au. BigPond.
- Fufe suffers shoulder injury in IRS practice match
- Australian international rules jumper decided
- Airdate: 2014 International Rules Test (TV Tonight)
- Sommet Sports TV Guide: 22/11/2014
- International rules set for Perth
- GAAGO to sponsor Ireland's International Rules side
- TG4 International Rules details
- "Murphy available for Oz mission". Hogan Stand. 1 October 2014. Retrieved 1 October 2014.
- Michael Murphy to captain Ireland in Australia
- Paul Earley includes players from 15 different counties in International Rules squad
- IRS rule changes to favour Aussies
- No more short kick-outs for International Rules
- Team news: Morgan and O'Neill out of Irish team