SANZA Brit Cup features increased numbers

Saturday, August 07 2004 @ 01:02 pm ACST

Contributed by: Brett Northey

The large Australian expatriate community ensures footy has a foothold in the UK, but the recent Brit Cup indicated that the number of locals playing has increased.

Every year the British Australian Rules Football League (BARFL) holds the SANZA Brit Cup. It is a week off from the usual league matches and is a tournament open only to EU citizens, i.e. no Australians. It is a chance for the locals to shine, and gives the British Bulldogs coaching staff a chance to evaluate who might make the cut for Britain's national side, in particular with the 2nd International Cup next year.

The British coach, Michael Bolt, was particularly pleased with the increased number of players this year, giving him the kind of selection headache that all coaches want. Around 120 players took part, including players from the Regional League and the new Scottish League. Significantly, only 7 of the 30 players from Britain's 2002 squad made it into the Team of the Tournament.

The 4th annual SANZA Teaching Agency Brit Cup was ultimately won by the West London Wildcats, who cruised to their 3rd straight title, defeating the hosts, Bristol.

A wrap of the tournament and the British coach's thoughts can be found at the BARFL website.

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