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Mainland, Northern, Central clinch youth futsal titles

Mainland, Central and Northern emerged as youth champions from last weekend’s ASB Futsal Youth Championships at ASB Sports Centre in Wellington.

A Mainland player sends a free kick goalward in the U-19 final against Capital.

July 16, 2012

AUCKLAND – Mainland, Central and Northern emerged as youth champions from last weekend’s ASB Futsal Youth Championships at ASB Sports Centre in Wellington.

The championships from July 7-9 were part of a combined National Futsal Junior Festival and Youth Championship where 37 federation representative teams competed across five age groups from U-10 to U-19, highlighting the rapid growth of the sport at grassroots level.

NZF Futsal Development Manager Dave Payne said there was also a noticeable rise in playing quality.

“The skills on display across all age brackets, and the intensity of competition at the U-14, U-16 and U-19 levels bodes incredibly well for the future,” Payne said.

“There are futsal development officers within the federations and the work they’ve putting into coaching and competition structures was certainly visible in the lift in overall playing standards.”

“From what I saw in Wellington, I expect we’ll see many of the older players making the step up to the ASB Futsal National League this season.

Mainland Futsal claimed the inaugural U-19 title with a 3-0 win over Capital Futsal in Monday’s final after earlier edging the same team to the top of the round robin, but Mainland’s U-14s had to settle for runners up medals despite topping Group A, as Group B winners Northern Futsal shading the southerners 6-5 in a dramatic final.

The U-16 final was equally close but Central Futsal got past Capital Futsal 7-6 in a thrilling encounter after upsetting Mainland in their semi-final.
A referee development academy run by NZF Referee Development Manager Ken Wallace in conjunction with the tournament was also key to the weekend’s success.

Referees from the Auckland, Central, Capital and the Mainland federations applied international refereeing techniques learned during the academy to U-16 and U-19 games they officiated as part of an overall weekend of referee development.

Championship Winners and Award Recipients
U-14
Winners Northern Futsal
Runners up: Mainland Futsal Red
Golden Boot: Ross Lewis (Northern Futsal) - 23 Goals
Golden Glove: Charles Boot (Mainland Futsal Red)
Most Valuable Player: Charles Boot (Mainland Futsal Red)

U-16
Winners: Central Futsal
Runners Up: Capital Futsal
Golden Boot: Cameron Emerson (Central Futsal) - 27 Goals
Golden Glove: Shawn Bolton (Capital Futsal)
Most Valuable Player: Cameron Emerson (Central Futsal)

U-19
Winners: Mainland Futsal
Runners Up: Capital Futsal
Golden Boot: Sam Mitchell (Mainland Futsal)- 8 Goals
Golden Glove: Hamish Mitchell (Mainland Futsal)
Most Valuable Player: Charl Compaan (Northern Futsal)

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