Articles on AFL

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Robbie ‘Bones’ McGhie after playing in the 1973 Grand Final, in which his team, Richmond, won. Rennie Ellis Photographic Archive

‘Bones’ McGhie, a cigarette and nostalgia for a greater game

Football has changed dramatically in the 35 years since Richmond last had a chance at the Grand Final. But while footy is now 'an industry', the arrival of the first women's league is to be celebrated.
Heritier Lumumba describes his experience of racism at Collingwood Football Club in Fair Game. SBS

Fair Game? The audacity of Héritier Lumumba

Héritier Lumumba played for Collingwood Football Club until 2014, where his teammates called him "Chimp". His experience mirrors that of many other black men in Australia, particularly in the workplace.
Indigenous children depicted in an etching playing the game of marngrook, which some have claimed inspired the game of Australian rules. Wikimedia Commons

Indigenous players didn’t invent Australian rules but did make it their own

The revival of the idea of Indigenous influence on the origins of Australian rules football diverts attention from another, much more uncomfortable story about Indigenous relationships to football.
Australian sport may only account for 1.6% of total household spend, but its macro impact on the economy is strong. from www.shutterstock.com

Sport is more than just a fringe player in Australia’s economy

Australian sport will never have the commercial clout to bring the economy out of recession or solve a regional unemployment problem. But it is more than a fringe player in the economic game.
Understanding what makes a great leader depends upon the measure of success, which in commercial sport is brutally unambiguous. AAP/Julian Smith

What are the attributes needed to be a successful sporting leader?

The goal of identifying leadership attributes that translate into team success remains as elusive in sport as it does in other spheres of human endeavour.
Susan Alberti (left) and Debbie Lee were pivotal to the formation of the national women’s AFL competition. Melbourne Football Club

Change Agents: Susan Alberti and Debbie Lee on establishing a national women’s football league

Change Agents: Establishing a national women’s football league. The Conversation, CC BY-NC-SA45.9 MB (download)
Andrew Dodd talks to Susan Alberti and Debbie Lee about their fight to overcome prejudice and establish a national women's AFL competition.
It may not be comfortable or easy to do but racist abuse needs to be challenged in sport and our society. Ben Macmahon/AAP

Eddie Betts and racism in sport: it’s not enough to just not join in

Sport can be a driver for change; it can make a difference in people’s lives and unify communities, particularly around national successes. But it can also create tensions and cause conflict.

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