Kick start (NSW)

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The Daily Examiner

Futsal players Nathan Butterick and Billy Hayes are all set for their UK tour.

Futsal players Nathan Butterick and Billy Hayes are all set for their UK tour.

Nathan Butterick and Billy Hayes are gearing up for the Futsal adventure of a lifetime as they prepare to join their teammates in the Australian touring side that departs for the United Kingdom on October 13.

The Grafton High students earned their selection in the Vikings Futsal International tour after excelling at the School Futsal Titles in Brisbane earlier this year.

Futsal is a variant of regular football, but is played on a smaller pitch, and usually indoors.

Unlike indoor soccer, the court is defined by lines, rather than walls or netting.

The Futsal rules create an emphasis on improvisation, creativity and technique as well as ball control and passing in small spaces.

“It should be a great experience and a chance to improve our Futsal,” Butterick, 15, said.

“Futsal is getting stronger and stronger in Grafton and hopefully we’ll be able to teach our teammates some of the tips and tricks when we come back.”

Hayes, 14, is particularly looking forward to playing against some of the European football stars of the future during the tour.

“We are going to be based at a training centre called Rhyl in Wales and it is one of (English Premier League club) Everton’s major training academies,” he said.

“It won’t be a holiday. We will be waking up at five in the morning, doing football training for a couple of hours and then doing Futsal skills training from seven to one o’clock each day.

“We’ll also get the chance to play some matches against the kids in the Everton Academy, as well as a team from Manchester City.”

The boys and their families have been busy organising fund-raising activities to help pay for the trip.

A trivia night will be held from 7pm tomorrow night at the Grafton District Services Club. Entry is $10 per person.

They have also organised a charity auction to be held with signed jerseys from NRL clubs Cronulla, Parramatta and Canterbury up for bidding.

“We have also got a raffle running for the Ultimate Party Pack,” Hayes said.

“It is a trailer load of alcohol, potato chips and soft drinks ready for an instant party.”

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