Scottish juniors to kick off in June
Sunday, May 27 2007 @ 08:17 am ACST
Contributed by: Aaron Richard
The Scottish Australian Rules Football League (SARFL), in partnership with Culture and Sport Glasgow, Community Club Programme is to launch Scotland's first junior Aussie Rules football program in Glasgow in June 2007 and to be run throughout the summer. The program will introduce the game through free-to-attend Glasgow youth clinics held at Bellahouston Park on a weekly basis, with the SARFL providing free coaching and tuition.
Affiliated with the British Australian Rules Football League, the SARFL league has been in existence since 2003 and from small beginnings when there was only 1 representative Scottish side (the Puffins), has now grown to be a self-sufficient 4-team senior league, with plans to establish new sides in cities such as Aberdeen, Stirling and Dundee in time. Currently there are 2 sides in Glasgow (the Sharks and the Magpies) and a further 2 sides in Edinburgh (the Bloods and the Bodysnatchers) and a new team being formed in Aberdeen, where a SARFL representative would like to hear from anyone interested in being introduced to the game in that area.
With support from a number of private and public organizations, the free junior Aussie Rules clinics will be in place around mid-June. The aim is to introduce the game to kids of all ages, who will carry out basic skills lessons and learn the rules of the game. This will involve sessions on kicking, hand passing, and bouncing the ball. The important thing is to develop confidence in junior players in the spirit of the game, which is based around team work and desire. To achieve this, a modified version of the game will be used in initial sessions and with younger age groups, which removes one of the contentious skills in the game -tackling. Following the introduction to the game through the clinics the SARFL will be looking for parents, volunteers and other sports clubs to assist in developing a junior league. The structure of the league format (age groups, clubs, season etc) will depend on the interest in the June summer clinics. For more information on the SARFL and its junior Aussie Rules program, visit the SARFL website.