Gridiron Australia announced on Friday that Wollongong (NSW, Australia) will host the 2019 Men’s World Championship of American Football at the iconic WIN Stadium beside the Pacific Ocean. From Tuesday 23 July to Monday 5 August 2019, 8 teams from member nations will compete for the title of World Champions – a title currently held by the United States of America.
Wollongong Lord Mayor Councillor Gordon Bradbery AM, said the event was a wonderful opportunity to showcase Wollongong to an international audience. “What a thrill it is to welcome the American Football World Championships to Wollongong. To have international participants and guests enjoying our attractions, natural assets and small bars and cafes for a fortnight is a coup for the city, as we showcase WIN Stadium to the world. I’m sure the teams will leave with lasting memories of our beautiful region . . . along with a few bruises after they come up against the Aussies!”
Darrin Mitchell, Gridiron Australia Chairman, is ecstatic to be able to host this event in Australia. “The City of Wollongong is an ideal location for us to showcase the game of American Football to Australia and promote Australia to our international friends. Gridiron Australia looks forward to bringing our game to the picturesque WIN Stadium and supporting the Illawarra region”.
The Hon. Stuart Laurence Ayres MP, Minister for Sport is supportive of the event and said today, “This is the first time an IFAF World Championship will be held on Australian soil,” says Mr Ayres. “Hosting a major international event like this in New South Wales provides more than economic benefits. It puts us on the map globally and demonstrates that Australia can take on the world in an American game,” says Mr Ayres. “For ten days in July and August next year, the seaside city of Wollongong will be the epicentre of gridiron.”
Australia has participated in several of the previous IFAF World Championships and the 2019 event will mark the 20th anniversary of IFAF international competition with the first tournament held in 1999 in Palermo, Italy.
Richard MacLean, President of IFAF, spoke of his excitement at the prospect of the 2019 World Championship being held in Australia, “The Australian public is renowned for its love of sport, with New South Wales being one of the sporting capitals of the world. I have no doubt that people who attend games will be treated to a fabulous spectacle and they will create a special atmosphere, particularly when the home nation are in action.” MacLean continued, “The WIN Stadium will provide a tremendous backdrop for the championship. I IFAF is grateful for the work which Darrin, Elissa, and their team are doing to prepare for the event.”