It’s the weekend we’ve ALL been waiting for!
Right as we welcome in the 2023 AFL Premiership season after what feels like bloody forever there’s some more important footy happening right here in Vietnam. The Vietnam Swans open their 2023 AFL Asia International account against one of Asia’s most formidable football clubs – the Hong Kong Dragons. On Saturday March 18th, the Vietnam Swans will host the Dragons down in the southern metropolis of Saigon in what should be an absolute barnburner of a season opener! Kick-off is at 1pm HCMC time.
As mentioned previously, we’re back where we belong at RMIT University in District 7 for this hit-out and we’re genuinely excited and confident about what lies ahead for the footy club this season. Any spectators wanting to attend please message the club on Facebook so we can put your details on the door and bring ID or a copy of it.
It’s been a big couple of months to start the year, from North and South bootcamps in Feb and the re-commencement of our SAFL and HAFL leagues, to welcoming new sponsors, acquiring new training decks, welcoming a couple of baby Swannies into the world (!) and even having a new set of goalposts engineered… The club is up and about and just frothing for the opportunity to go out on the battlefield as a unit and put together four quarters of seriously good football! Make sure you get amongst it!
For the first time in a LONG TIME, the men’s squad have retained the huge majority of their 2022 cattle (Minus the great Aaron ‘Mitch Robinson’ Clerkin, who is sorely missed!) and with a few very handy new recruits, we’re in a better position than ever to consolidate our position as a top contender in Asia across multiple divisions come the business end of the season.
Watch out for…
One to watch is newcomer Cam King (Just ask his mates back in SA!), who has trained the house down since arriving and can seemingly play around the ground as a utility depending on where he may be needed on any given day. With an accurate left foot, a good set of dukes and a solid footy IQ, we’re looking forward to seeing him in action against an A-Grade international opponent like the Dragons. His off-field potential has also created a bit of a buzz but no doubt he’ll be on his best behavior with the family in town this weekend.
Another to keep your eye on is Will Sandman. Will was dominant in the Swans midfield throughout Asian Champs last year, receiving (well deserved) Division 3 All-Asia honors for his efforts across the day. Will has had a big few months on the track and is in great shape, and with somewhat of a point to prove this year you can bet he will be in the mix throwing his brick shithouse around at the contest. When you pair this with both his ball skills and a clever mind, it makes for a very dangerous footballer. Word on the street is that he may be crossing-over and suiting up for his old club this weekend, so look out!
Due to a pretty heavy injury list we’ll be fielding a new-look defense, with a couple of old heads likely cameoing back there to help Prez Matty Barton keep things under control in our final third. Asia’s most lethal engine room will again be complete with the confirmed inclusion of National Co-Captain Jake “Burra” Norris, who is making his way down from Hanoi to join the boys in the middle of ground for the first bounce. Another key component, Paul “Villa” Villanova is also traveling from North to South for the season opener and will take his place at Full Forward where he was so damaging at certain stages of 2022.
Stay tuned to our social media channels for score updates on the day, followed by end results and a brief review of the weekend early next week. Honk!
Post Game Event
We’re looking forward to getting down to a fantastic new venue in the heart of District 1 – The Jackaroo Bar & Grill, a fantastic setup with some of the best food in town. Will be a great way to cap off the day and perhaps kick on into the cities night spots.
The Jackaroo Bar & Grill – 6:30pm start
41 Nguyen An Minh, Ben Thanh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam
Entry – 590k VND per person inc. VAT
3 Hour Free Flow Tiger bottles, Somersby Apple Cider bottles, Soft drinks, Water
Brisket burgers, Chicken Parma Hot Dogs, Smoker Beef Snags, Veggie Quesadillas, Garden Salads