The 2011 edition of the FFA Futsal National Championships will be the 32nd time that the premier indoor event on the national calendar is competed as over 140 teams from across the nation converge on Canberra to do battle on the courts of the nation’s capital.
2010 saw two ‘surprise’ winners of the Open Men’s and Women’s events with NSW Lightning and Queensland back to defend the titles they won in such style last year. Standing in their way however will be representatives from all member Federations across Australia, with the exception of Northern Territory.
Local favourites, the ACT, will be hoping to go one better than 2010 when both Open Age teams were defeated at the last hurdle and will no doubt receive the bulk of the support throughout the seven days of fast and frenetic competition.
The sport of Futsal promotes skill and mobility ahead of the more physical aspects of its outdoor cousin thus creating young players with imagination and ability that are noticeable when transferred to the larger outdoor fields. Despite having many similarities with the eleven-a-side version of the game Futsal does, of course, possess much that makes it a unique and exciting spectator sport. Played at it’s best, Futsal is all-action, all-entertainment, ultra-quick and packed with goals. Don’t blink or you may miss something amazing!
Many of the teams involved in this tournament will have been hard at training through the last few months learning the set pieces and positioning that is intrinsic to the sport. Even some of the substitutions in Futsal are usually planned ahead as teams strive to find that extra advantage and create the space needed to make a game-breaking pass or score a crucial, match-winning goal.
Inventiveness is highly sought after amongst coaches and the ability to command the ball, which is smaller and has less of a bounce that a regular football, is a commodity that makes the great players stand out from their counterparts. You’re sure to see many of these players showcasing their abilities throughout the five days of action.
Outside of the players the competition couldn’t run without the support and dedication of the match officials, who will be scooting between venues to officiate at all age groups, the admin staff and, of course, the volunteers.
Squads have been selected, tactics have been honed and belief has been instilled. The stage is set and the curtain has been raised, so it’s over to the player’s, the Futsal elite of Australia, to perform and make the 2011 FFA Futsal National Championships one to remember.