Territory Stories

The Northern Territory news Tue 6 Jan 2015



The Northern Territory news Tue 6 Jan 2015

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NT news


The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT




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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin

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News Corp Australia

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Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

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News Corp Australia



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30 SPORT TUESDAY JANUARY 6 2015 NTNE01Z01MA - V1 League could pit NT talent against international neighbours THE World Game in the Northern Territory has already been earmarked for a leading role in the plan to develop the Asian sporting market. With the Asian Cup about to kick off in Australia, a tentative proposal is already in the pipeline to create a Premier League with four clubs from the Territory and one each from Indonesia and Timor-Leste. The plan, although still in its infancy, has the support of the Football Federation of Australia and NT Chief Minister Adam Giles. FFNT chief executive Craig Chapman, who is working as the liaison officer for Qatar at the Asian Cup, said while the fine details needed to be ironed out, the cautious nod of approval had been given. The vision that has been briefly discussed so far with the FFA and Adam Giles is that we would like to have a National Premier League competition in the Northern Territory, Chapman said late last year. He said the provisional format for the new concept was three teams from Darwin, one from Alice Springs and teams from Timor-Leste and Indonesia possibly Bali. Having some overseas teams brings a different dynamic, Chapman said. The Federal Government white paper for Northern Aus tralia focuses strongly on Asian engagement with the NT Government. We are one of the few sports that has the capacity to connect into all the countries in South-East Asia. Chapman said there had been discussions between the governments of Timor-Leste and the NT about how a co-operative football agreement could work. Originally I was looking at 2016, he said. We missed that window but 2017 is definitely on the cards. Chapman said it would be a tremendous opportunity for players to become semi-professional footballers. It would provide a new level of competition, he said. By DOUG BOOTH Game to play globally THE push to develop stronger sporting ties with Asia is gaining momentum. Key representatives from a variety of sports have agreed in principle to get together and pursue a common goal of building closer links with the Top Ends northern neighbours. While plans are still in the embryonic stage, leaders from sports such as soccer, rugby, basketball, horse racing, squash and lawn bowls have all shown positive attitudes to the idea. Playing competitive sports against Asian teams is nothing new. Teams from Darwin regularly head north to take on local clubs in different disciplines and the now-defunct Arafura Games was a key ingredient in fostering greater ties with Asia. At the front of the queue to build links and create more interest is the Australian Sepak Takraw Association which has its headquarters in Nightcliff. Takraw president and Darwin businesswoman Jude Ellen believes the concept of a steering committee tasked with developing specific goals of building sporting contacts is the way to go. While sporting groups have been connected in some way for years with Asia, the opportunity is there to do it differently, Ellen said. We can close the gap from Darwin so we can present a united front to Asia. There will be pathways for our kids in sports development with immense opportunities in language, in culture, in school exchange programs. If the community benefits, business will also benefit. Ellen said good match practice is hard to come by because of the distances to Australian capital cities such as Perth, Sydney and Melbourne. Thats why we have to look to Denpasar and Jakarta. Takraw Australia already has a strong Asian content on its calendar. A training camp will be held in Thailand in March-April with an Australian team taking part in the Super Series Challenge in Singapore in May fol lowed by the World Cup in Bangkok, Thailand. Ellen is canvassing government support for an international event in Darwin in October. NT Squash vice-president Les Reif is another supporter of the desire to improve links with Asia. He said the key was to develop the sports juniors. Chief Minister Adam Giles said a community approach to developing sporting links had his backing. SOCCER RUGBY UNION BASKETBALL SEPAK TAKRAW BOUND FOR ASIA