New Zealanders have been playing Australian football for just as long as Aussies have. In 1882 there were 36 New Zealand clubs playing the sport. By 1901, they had 115 Australian football teams.
Today four leagues operate under the banner of AFL New Zealand:
Football is played during summer to accommodate rugby and soccer schedules.
Next year (2013) will mark an historic development in New Zealand's Australian football history when two AFL clubs -- the Sydney Swans and St Kilda -- play a match for Premiership points on Anzac Day in Wellington.
NZAFL Senior Leagues/Clubs
Mt Roskill Saints
North Shore Tigers
North City Demons
Hamilton Red Backs
Hutt Valley Eagles
Mid Ashburton Eagles
Ranked number two, the Hawks returned to IC11 as strong favourites and were looking for their second title after winning in 2005 and finishing runners-up in 2008.
Despite convincing wins over Britain and Canada, the Hawks fell short in the preliminary final, losing in a bruising battle against Ireland.
However, the Hawks did come in first as having the favourite guernsey among IC11 fans.