Tuesday, May 10, 2016


World Championships-2016


                                                         The Canadian Women's Team

The World Under 19 Women’s Floorball Championships concluded last Sunday in Belleville. The Canadian team played its way successfully into the Gold Medal Game in the “B” division. They had to play Germany once again, certainly their nemesis in the game.

 Trailing 5-3 in the final period, the Canadians tied the score in the dying minutes of the game. And then the Germans scored to nail down the victory, on a somewhat contentious goal. In the “A” Division, Sweden defeated Finland 6-3 to win the title.

As a spectator at several of the Games, the rules, and the application of those rules, proved to be somewhat confusing, at times. Even though the game appears to be cloned from hockey, there are variations that are certainly derived from soccer. There is contact, and it is supposed to be incidental. On a couple of occasions, players were sent sprawling over the boards, with no call. And yet, moments later, players were sent to the penalty box for virtually no reason.

Brett Davis oversaw the games as the President of the Canadian contingent. When I asked him about the rules of the game, he replied, “Once you get it figured, it becomes a chess match!”

                                                 Brett Davis, with Rosi Oulette

The boards are only about 40 centimeters high, and the ball often flies out of bounds. The ball is awarded to the team not responsible for shooting the ball over the boards. As in soccer. Goalies have no sticks, and rely on instinct and reflexes to stop shots. As in soccer.

But the players do carry sticks, and are adept with them in pushing around a whiffle ball about the size of a hardball.

It was truly a great international event for the area. Flags of the participating nations adorned the Sports Centre. Players, coaches, administrators, and friends from 15 nations interacted in the name of sport. Never a bad idea. Fans came from many European nations to cheer for their teams, in their own manner. That is, an incessant banging of drums, and tooting of horns. Win, lose, or draw: the same noise, constantly. They just don’t quit!

The organizers were thrilled with the turnout for the Games. There were more than 3 000 fans at the first Canadian game against the Japanese. It was great to see so many fans at the Yardmen Arena. Although the games between the European teams were not as well attended, overall attendance was outstanding!

This was the first time that the games had been held outside Europe. The success of these games bodes well for the future of the sport in North America. Organizers are constantly promoting the game, hoping to see it as an Olympic sport in 2024.

Special recognition is in order for the Trenton Golden Hawks. They are on their way to play in the Royal Bank Cup. Wellington Dukes fans know the experience, as we attended two Cups in Prince Edward Island and Alberta.

Congratulations to Marc Crawford on his appointment as an assistance coach of the Ottawa Senators. His brother Todd coached the Canadian team at the Floorball games.

And now? A little time for the Raptors, the Blue Jays, the World Hockey Championships. And yes, time to garden as well!

James Hurst

May 9, 2016.

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