Australia to host the return of the International Rules Series in 2017

The games will be played on the 11th and 17th of November next year

International Rules Series

Image: ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Australia will host Ireland in a two-test International Rules Series in the southern hemisphere in 2017, the GAA announced this afternoon.

Next year will see the return of the series played over the weekends of November 11th and 18th, with venues for the games still yet to be decided.

"We are pleased to confirm the re-instatement of a two-game series commencing next year in Australia when Joe Kernan will bring the Irish team down under," said GAA President Aogán Ó Fearghail/

"We believe the two-game series is a logical development after the success of the last two single games series, given the distances involved and the potential to generate even more momentum around the games.

"We look forward to renewing rivalries with the best the AFL has to offer and we acknowledge the progress made in recent months with our AFL counterparts in helping to confirm the plans for 2017."

More recent editions of the contest have been Australia's victory over Ireland in Perth in 2014 and Ireland's victory over the Aussies in 2015 in Croke Park.

Paul Cribbin and Bernard Brogan celebrate with The Cormac McAnallen Cup in 2015 after beating Australia in Croke Park. Image: ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne 

The International Rules Series will return to Ireland in 2019, with an agreement in principle to play a two-test series on these shores.

"The one-off Test matches in Perth and Dublin over the last two years were two high-class encounters played in front of very strong crowds," AFL General Manager Football Operations Mark Evans said in a statement today.

"Australian and Irish fans have shown they want to see a spectacular and competitive contest played between the most talented AFL players and Ireland’s best Gaelic footballers.

"Restricting selection to only a player who has earned All Australian selection through his AFL career has ensured the prestige of playing in the International Rules Series and we look forward to hosting the Irish side again next year."

The series is sure to draw spectators with the recent two close contests and also from an Australian point of view that some of the finest young GAA players in the country have gone to the southern hemisphere to play in the AFL, most recently Conor Nash who has signed a rookie contract with Hawthorn.