Bowen Warriors Coache Dale Itchins giving team tactics. Image Credit: Solstice Digital & Photography

After several years without football (soccer) being a part of the Southern Primary Schools Sports Association Winter Carnival, the inclusion of the round ball was a hit at Wentworth Park yesterday.

This was the first time Football Federation Tasmania has facilitated the event, with over 150 boys and girls that were excited to participate in the carnival.

Six (6) children from each of the southern government primary schools were nominated to attend trials in their region, with a final squad of 12 boys and 12 girls selected for each of the following regional teams; Huon Lions, Clarence, Derwent, Hobart City, Bowen Warriors and Northern Knights.

They participated in a full day of 9-aside football games, the boys played the first half of each game and the girls played the second half.

Football Federation Tasmania MiniRoos Manager, Ben Horgan, was a part of the organisation and said:

“We hear all the time that football is getting more popular in the school playground so FFT were really excited to be invited to be part of the SPSSA’s Winter Carnival. The games were played in great spirit, and we were really pleased to have so many of our National Premier League clubs on board to assist with coaching in the lead up to the event and on the day.

“We hope that the positive experience and the connections that the kids have made with their local clubs will lead to even more growth in participation next season.” Horgan shared.

Derwent Coach: Loic Feral. Manager: Leigh Nichols.

Football Federation Tasmania Women’s and Girls’ Development Officer, Holly-Lace Ayton added:

“What a great way to bring together young children and local clubs for a full day of football. Some of the teams had children who had previously never experienced an organised game of football before, this gave them a wonderful opportunity, that may lead onto them wanting to join a local club and play more regularly.

“A big highlight was seeing both the boys and the girls interacting and supporting each other in a positive and inclusive manner, having club coaches and school teachers as coaches and managers was also a big victory, this was by far one of the most successful football events I have attended.”

Bowen Warriors – Coach Jakub Sklenar (Olympia Warriors).

Hobart City Squad, Coaches: Holly Ayton and Laura Edwards (Taroona FC & Hobart Zebras), Manager: Chris Riewoldt. 

Congratulations to all that participated and to Hobart City for winning the grand final.

Football Federation Tasmania would like to thank the following clubs for their support in providing coaches and equipment for the SPSSA Winter Carnival; Hobart Zebras, Glenorchy Knights, Kingborough Lions, Clarence United, South Hobart, Taroona Pirates and Olympia Warriors.

Football Federation Tasmania would like to thank Georgie Dudgeon and Sarah Bushby from SPSSA and the Clarence Council.