Australia joins AFF, won't compete in Suzuki Cup


Posted at Aug 27 2013 11:19 AM | Updated as of Aug 27 2013 07:19 PM

Australia became a full member of South East Asia's ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) on Monday with the backing of all the members of the regional organization.

"We look forward to being an active member and to contributing to the ongoing development and success of football in our region," Football Federation Australia (FFA) general secretary and chief executive David Gallop said in a statement.

The decision was taken after a unanimous vote by the 11 member associations at an AFF Extraordinary Congress in Dili, Timor Leste.

"Whilst this could be seen as the final piece in Australia's integration into AFC (Asian Football Confederation), it is more appropriate to say this is the beginning of a mutual commitment to the advancement of football in South East Asia," said AFC vice president and FFA director Moya Dodd.

Australia joined the AFC in 2006 after moving from the less competitive Oceania Federation and were subsequently invited to become members of the AFF.

An FFA spokesman told Reuters earlier this year that the Socceroos had no plans to compete against lowly teams in AFF's biennial Suzuki Cup and that they would continue to play in future editions of the East Asian Cup.

Australia are currently participating in the AFF Under-16 boys championships in Myanmar and will also compete in the AFF Women's Championship and AFF Futsal Championship later this year.

(Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi, editing by Tony Jimenez)