AFL Queensland today launched the Alpha Sport Pre-Season Cup, a new competition to curtain-raise the community football season.
The Cup will consist of 32 teams from the QAFL, QFA North and QFA South, QAFA (A) and QAFA (B)’s North, Central and South competitions.
The three week knock-out event, starting on Saturday March 14, will be played across South-East Queensland.
Teams have been selected based on 2014 results, and are split into 4 pools of 8 teams each.
Each team will compete in their pool, with winners moving through to the next week of the competition, concluding with the grand final on March 28.
The Alpha Sport Pre-Season Cup will give teams an opportunity to play against rivals in their current competition, and other teams across different divisions.
AFL Queensland Football Operations Manager, Craig Millar said that the competition would provide new opportunities for all participating clubs.
“[This is] A great opportunity for clubs in South East Queensland to be exposed to structured pre-season matches,” said Millar.
“Double and Triple header matches at various venues on the Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast and Brisbane will enable all football supporters the opportunity to see their own club and higher level clubs compete all at the one venue.
“The winners of each pool will receive a season startup pack containing club apparel and equipment to kick-start their 2015 seasons”.
Millar said the support of long-time AFL Queensland sponsor Alpha Sport had been vital in getting the competition off the ground.
“Alpha Sport is a long-term partner of AFLO Queensland and we are very grateful that they have extended their sponsorship to support this initiative,” said Millar
The change in pre-season format presents a new challenge for all teams involved, providing some mouth-watering clashes to kick off the football year.
The Alpha Sport Pre-Season Cup will include:
· 32 teams playing over two weekends (March 14 and 21), with the winning teams to play in a finals weekend on March 28.
· Included are 2 trial games between NEAFL sides; Gold Coast, Southport, Aspley and Redlands.
Games to Watch (March 14):
1. NEAFL – Gold Coast SUNS v Southport (12.30pm, Metricon Stadium):
Winless in 2014, the Gold Coast SUNS will be for atonement against a Southport outfit that struggled in 2014.
NEAFL – Aspley v Redlands (2.00pm, Moreton Bay Central Sporting Complex):
The reigning premiers take on their elimination final victims in an intriguing battle at the Moreton Bay Central Sporting Complex. The last match played between these two teams had Aspley leading at every change to run out 23-point winners.
2. QAFL – Morningside v Wilston Grange (2.00pm, Leyshon Park): The 2014 QAFL premiers take on the Gorillas at Leyshon Park in a captivating match-up.
3. QAFL and QFA (South) – UQ v Burleigh (2.10pm, Coomera Sports Park):
The prime time game at Coomera will be played between the Red Lions and the Bombers in an interesting cross competition clash. Last year’s QFA (South) runners up take on the QAFL’s new kids on the block. UQ, in its second season will be looking for improvement against a tricky opponent in Burleigh.
4. QFA (North) and (South) – Mayne v Springwood (4.50pm, Leyshon Park):
The twilight game to be played at Yeronga will be an absolute thriller. Two teams, both premiers, two big game rivals. This enthralling battle will be played for ultimate QFA bragging rights.
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