ANU falls short to Melbourne Uni in first AFL clash

7 April 2015

ANU went down to the University of Melbourne in the first Australian rules football clash between the two universities at South Oval.

Despite the home-ground advantage, ANU had a slow start in the first quarter, but managed a strong fight throughout the remainder of the game.

At the final siren, the University of Melbourne had kicked 16-4 (100) to 5-5 (35) for ANU.

Around 300 students and supporters turned up to watch the first clash on Thursday April 2, and the two teams said they were keen to involve more university teams in future.

University of Melbourne Director of Sport Tim Lee was gracious in victory, and said he hoped the first match would lead to a wider inter-varsity competition.

"What we're trying to do is really develop a national competition over time between the Group of 8 universities that we are able to engage the university community with," he said.

"We'd like to do a formal pre-season competition and we'll be talking to the university administrators about how we can get some support to do that. We hope that Orientation Week we'd have a competition, either next year or the year after, so ANU and Melbourne would be playing each other at least once annually," Lee said.

ANU Sport Chief Executive Michael Brady said the offer to host Melbourne was too good to refuse.

"We felt this was a good opportunity to introduce the students to the concept and I think the game has shown that they would be prepared to do that, so we think that's certainly one box ticked as far as the success of the occasion is concerned," he said.

He said engagement with alumni was another area that could help the competition grow.

"Those who have been through the ANU football club would have memories rekindled of times they had playing down at South Oval. We think that this is probably an area that we think this concept could grow as well."