Category: Front Page, Mens, Womens, Junior, Game Development, Club Development, Futsal
Junior Club in Focus - Jamestown Strike
Jamestown Strike Fustal club is thriving after an explosion in its participation numbers over the last five years and it doesn’t look like slowing down any time soon.
Located just over 200kms North of Adelaide, the club was formed in 2007 after the collapse of the outdoor version in 2006 when the region experienced a massive hike in fuel prices.
The club was also struggling to field enough players to complete a team and competing in Port Pirie’s Junior Association competition proved to be too far and costly.
“At the time everyone was disappointed that we were unable to play outdoor soccer, however it did make us look into other avenues of what could we do to help get our local kids to play soccer,” said Jamestown and District Soccer Club Secretary Emma Zanker.
After 12 months of careful planning, investigating and promoting, Jamestown Strike held a ‘Come’n’Try Futsal’ day which proved to be a massive success.
The event led to 65 registered juniors and 25 registered adults for 2007 which forced the club to start a competition with two junior divisions and one division for adults.
Players came from various regions including Gladstone, Crystal Brook, Bullaroo, Georgetown, Peterborough, Spalding, Booborowie and even as far as Clare.
“We had advertised in local papers and in school newsletters. We really had no idea of numbers, we just thought we would see what would happen. We aimed at keeping the day fun and not too complicated we just wanted to get kids to have a go at Futsal,” said Zanker.
“We were lucky that at the time as The Big Shed was a relatively new sporting facility in Jamestown and with Futsal needing only 5 per side and could be played indoors, it was an ideal sport to get some teams together and have a go.”
“We felt that if we could get 20-30 kids interested that this would be enough to get a junior Futsal competition going. An added bonus was that adults also came to play Futsal, and in quite a few families everybody was playing.”
“We were astounded by the response and the numbers of kids and parents that turned up. We were also blown away by where people had come from, we had kids from Jamestown but also from surrounding towns and some came from as far away as Clare.”
In 2012, the numbers have now grown to 175 juniors and 37 adults spread across the competitions which are now played twice weekly.
“The club members are ecstatic that Futsal has been well received by people in Jamestown and surrounding towns,” said Zanker.
“In previous years we had only played on Friday but this year we had to make the decision to go to two nights a week or the adults would still be playing at around midnight.”
“For the younger and new players it is a great sport to start with as it give them a confidence to try playing sport and taste of soccer which then has given kids the confidence to try the next step of outdoor soccer.”
In just five years, the club that once borrowed goals and other equipment is now fully self sufficient and thriving and even enjoying healthy rivalry with other regions including Minalton on the Yorke Peninsula.
The two towns play-off for a Country Cup and alternate hosting the event each year, while Jamestown Strike has also teamed up with SAPOL to hold a Blue Light tournament played across two days.
“The committee have always tried to mix kids up in teams from all the surrounding towns and this has helped to build friendships within our district,” said Zanker.
Jamestown Strike also recently competed in the SAPSASA tournaments in Adelaide and 13 players from the club were selected to play for Port Pirie in the State Junior Championships.
“A great spin off from Futsal is that more junior players are playing outdoor soccer,” said Zanker.
“We have combined with players from Jamestown, Gladstone and Crystal Brook many who already play Futsal to play in the Port Pirie Junior Soccer Association under the team name of “The Rangers” and this has allowed some of the players to be selected to play in State and Country Competitions with teams from Port Pirie.”
Football Federation SA Game Development Officer and former Adelaide United striker Cristiano, will be visiting Jamestown in the coming weeks to conduct more fustal clinics, an initiative which the club fully supports and hopes will attract new players to further strengthen the Strike’s development.
“For the younger and new players it is a great sport to start with as it give them a confidence to try playing sport and taste of soccer which then has given kids the confidence to try the next step of outdoor soccer,” said Zanker.
Each week we are putting the spotlight on a Junior Club. If you are interested in having the focus put on your club, email email@example.com