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The Boomerang that Came Back - Asian Cup

Nov 11 The Boomerang that Came Back - Asian Cup

Cessnock City Council and local residents are thrilled at the Japan Football Association’s announcement that they have chosen Cessnock as their base for the 2015 AFC Asian Cup.

Cessnock City Council and local residents are thrilled at the Japan Football Association’s announcement that they have chosen Cessnock as their base for the 2015 AFC Asian Cup.

This didn’t all happen by chance, however. Cessnock Mayor, Councillor Bob Pynsent, says a lot of hard work and planning went into securing Cessnock’s position as host.  

 

Cessnock was chosen as one of the 27 contenders to host an official pre-competition camp, and Council invited all 16 of the competing AFC Asian Cup 2015 teams to visit Cessnock to experience its world renowned hospitality.  

 

In May 2014, Council sent each of the teams a personalised gift consisting of a hand-painted boomerang, video of the region, stuffed toys (koala and kangaroo) and a letter of invitation from the Mayor.  

 

“Each competing team was sent a limited edition boomerang, hand-painted by internationally renowned artist and local Aboriginal elder, Les Elvin,” Clr Pynsent said.  

“The invitation letter explained that if thrown properly, a boomerang rotates and returns to the thrower. It was gifted to each team in the hope that they would return it back to Cessnock and be welcomed as guests to our city.”    

 

The approach proved successful when Cessnock hosted an official visit from the Japanese Football Association in early August this year.  

“This is how long we’ve had this on our radar for,” Clr Pynsent said.  

 

“With Cessnock City’s close proximity to Newcastle, we are able to provide the Japanese players, support staff and their families with all the facilities they need for a comfortable stay and a solid preparation.”  

 

The 2015 AFC Asian Cup presents a one-off opportunity to promote the region the Hunter Valley on a global scale, increase visitation as well as enhancing opportunities for the region as a sporting centre of excellence.  

 

The Japanese Football Team is expected to be welcomed to Cessnock on 3 January 2015.

 

Image: Japan Football Association’s official visit to Cessnock in August 2014
L-R: Ai Kawaguchi, Local Japanese resident; Jane Holdsworth, Economic Development Manager, Cessnock City Council; Robert Coates, General Manager, Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley; Naoki Tsumura, Administrator of A Team, Japan Football Association; Haruko Asakura, Local Japanese resident; and Clr Bob Pynsent, Mayor of City of Cessnock.