The Team Ireland Under 13’s squad had a very impressive debut in the European Flag Football Championship Finals, played in Rome, Italy over the weekend of 17th to 19th September. The team finished in second place overall, after reaching the Final, where they were defeated by reigning Champions, the Netherlands.
The Irish team got off to a very impressive start in the league stage of the competition with comprehensive victories over Austria and Germany on Saturday morning. The team then lost to Switzerland on Saturday afternoon. On Sunday morning, they were involved in two close games – losing to host country Italy by only 1 point and then beating the Netherlands by 1 point. Three wins qualified the team for the Semis.
Team Ireland had a comfortable 33-24 victory over Austria in the Semi-final, but then lost by 39-13 to the Netherlands in the Grand Final.
The players representing Ireland were selected from the schools currently participating in the Schools Flag Football programme underway in the Midlands. This is the first time that an Irish underage flag football team contested a European finals. All of the players in the squad were introduced to the sport for the firts time through the Schools Flag programme. The team is being coached by Ken Farrell and Aidan Waters, both of whom are involved in the programme. What is also notable, is that the Irish squad was the youngest in the competition. As the players were selected from Primary Schools, the majority are only 11 or 12 years old and so will still qualify for U13 level next year.
All games were played in Rome’s Stadio Pasquale Giannattasio.
The tournament website is: http://www.euroflagrome2010.com
Team Ireland Results:
Ireland 32 -14 Austria
Ireland 49-19 Germany
Ireland 0-13 Switzerland.
Ireland 26-27 Italy
Ireland 20-19 Netherlands.
Ireland 33-24 Austria
Ireland 13-39 Netherlands.