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Durham Region SA Futsal Presentation

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 OSA Under 16 Girls Champs                                                         Oshawa Turul U16 Girls: 2008 OSA Futsal Cup Champs

June 19th, 2009

OSHAWA, ONT- The Durham Region Soccer Association conducted their club presidents meeting last night which included a 20 minute presentation by Ontario Soccer Association Futsal Committee Member Kris Fernandes.

The presentation was intended to further educate the district's chief decision-makers on futsal's significance, its benefits, and to encourage more participation of Durham's clubs into the sport. Presidents from a dozen clubs, including Pickering SC, Darlington SC, Whitby Iroquois, Ajax SC, and Oshawa Turul (the first and only Durham club to have ever won an OSA Futsal Cup), and a slew of others were in attendance.

DRSA logo

Like many other districts across Canada, Durham has seen a rise in the number of new artificial turf facilities in the region over the last decade. This has, of course, been detrimental to futsal's growth while giving a boost to the traditional Canadian indoor soccer that usually includes 7 or 8 a-side games. However with the steady amount of local high school, college and community centre gymnasiums scattered in the region futsal can easily be implemented for a very affordable cost. Many teams saddled with the burden of paying high costs for games at turf domes already practice in gyms. The difference that a low-bounce futsal ball makes is ideal for the gym. 

Fernandes emphasized the fact that futsal is not looking to replace the 7 or 8 a side versions but that it is inevitably going to play a much bigger player in Canada's player development programs and national team offerings. He reiterated that futsal is the only version of indoor soccer that FIFA and CONCACAF will support, that there is indeed a FIFA Futsal World Cup that is soaring in popularity and for the possibility to one day see players from Durham Region represent the Canadian National Futsal Team at that tournament.

Many of the clubs praised futsal as an extraordinary developmental tool and sport and their desire to see futsal develop further within their club. A great surprise emerged when Pickering SC Coaching Chief Tony La Ferrara mentioned afterwards that his club has been running an in house futsal league for the past three years that has grown from 30 participants in its first year into what now features over 350 competitive kids playing during the winter.

It's league such as Pickering's that will help continue to build the sport within the diistrict and naturally a major goal is to see a strong and united league emerge within Durham, featuring multiple clubs. Another major objective is to help promote the sport through new coaching and referee clinics along with hosting tournaments so that the future of the players within the region have the best opportunity to further advance their skills. By playing the world's indoor game they will certainly get closer to realizing their potential.