Ben Graham to represent Australia

Reproduced from the Herald Sun

FORMER Geelong captain Ben Graham will kit up for Australia when he represents the nation at American football in July. 

Graham, punter for the Arizona Cardinals, will take advantage of the NFL lockout by making himself available for the International Federation of American Football world championships in Austria.

The titles will feature the best players from eight nations across four continents.

The Aussies – the Australian Outback team – will play its Group A games against defending champion US, Mexico and Germany.

Austria, France, Japan and Canada comprise Group B. The top two from each group advance.

Graham stunned Geelong at the end of 2004 when he said he was quitting to accept an offer to play in the NFL.

In March, the NFL announced a lockout of players by team owners after the move by the players’ union to dissolve itself and pursue court action against the league.

Owners and players are in dispute over a range of issues, including how to divide more than $9 billion in annual revenues. The 2011-12 season is scheduled to start in early September.

by Sam Weller