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Chinese Arena Football League Coming Soon
WEST CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa., Aug. 30, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Ganlan Media
International, a sports development company based in Beijing, announces
that it has received the exclusive rights from the Arena Football
League to establish a China-based professional American arena football
As owners of Ganlan Media International, Martin E. Judge, Jr., CEO and
founder of The Judge Group, and Ron Jaworski, ESPN Analyst and NFL Pro
Bowl quarterback, will spearhead the project. Both businessmen are also
owners of The Philadelphia Soul, the 2012 Eastern Divisional Champions
of the Arena Football League.
Jaworski traveled to Beijing this week to join Judge and Gary Morris,
president of The Judge Group, to meet with Chinese officials and the
Government to receive their approval and support for bringing American
football to China. Afterward, they hosted press conferences, which were
attended by the three leading news organizations in China to announce
that “Professional American Football is coming to China.”
“We’re coming to a country that doesn’t know much about what American
football is, but China is a country that loves sports,” Jaworski said.
“They will pick up on football very quickly. I watched the Olympics
this summer and watched their weightlifters, and I think I’d like to
have some of those guys on my offensive line.”
“I have been doing business in China since 2008,” said Judge. “In 2010,
Ron and I were discussing his ventures to take football to India.
During this conversation, we discussed that China would also be a great
country in which to expand the international sport of professional
football. We then began discussions with Jerry Kurz, Commissioner of
the AFL, to obtain their exclusive rights to the game in China.”
“We are excited and extremely motivated to support Marty, Ron and Gary,
along with their Chinese partners, in any way we can to extend our
great game to China,” said Kurz. “We just celebrated our 25th season,
which is very exciting to all of us within the AFL. Bringing our game
to China, and in the future to many more countries, is a great way to
add to our celebration.”
Jaworski has teamed with Judge as part of the ownership group in China.
An NFL star himself, Jaworski has been an energetic owner and proponent
of the indoor game since the Philadelphia Soul launched in 2003.
“I am impressed with the passion I see here in China and all over the
world for our game,” said Jaworski. “It won’t be easy, but with Marty’s
leadership, Gary’s presence in China, the support of the Chinese
officials and government, the exclusive backing of the AFL, and
personal friends like my old coach Dick Vermeil behind us, I know we
have the perfect team to make this work.”
“I have learned many things about the Chinese culture and its people’s
passion for sports over the last four years living and working in
China,” said Morris. “Through extensive communications over the last
several years with our commercial and government relationships in
China, I have found that they feel very strongly that professional
American arena football will be successful because it’s a high-energy,
high-scoring game played very close to the fans. It can be played in
the many indoor stadium venues that already exist in China, which makes
it a natural fit.”
For the inaugural season, Ganlan Media International projects a
six-team model, playing a 10-game schedule in the fall/winter of 2014.
Since the AFL plays a spring/summer schedule, a fall/winter schedule in
China will allow managers, coaches, players and referees from the
United States the ability to help the Chinese league train and develop
over the next few years as it expands to multiple cities throughout
China. Ganlan Media International is planning to have three exhibition
games in 2013 in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou.
For more information on Ganlan Media International, please call