Editor’s Note: Please welcome Giacomo Bonizzoni, aka Coach Cibe, to LaxAllStars.com! Coach Cibe knows as much about Italian Lacrosse as anyone, and is fully dedicated to seeing the popularity of lacrosse explode in Italy. He’ll be updating the LAS nation on Italy’s Lacrosse progress with monthly posts!
Make sure you also check out Coach Cibe’s website – CoachCibe.it! It’s a great read and full of information!
The new Italian field lacrosse season officially began on December the 2nd with an All-Star Game held in Milan. This match saw the best players from Northern Italy face the best of Southern and Central Italy. While the first edition of this lacrosse gathering, held in Rome in 2011, was won by the Central/Southern team, this year the Northern team won a very intense and spectacular match.
On December the 8th, the federation held its annual general meeting, during which, teams voted on the new FIGL (the Italian Lacrosse Federation) board for the next four years. The new president is Steven Whitford, the most expert Italian lacrosse man (although he was born in Australia, he is now a true Italian), who is also captain and assistant coach of the Italian national team. The Italian teams trust in him because of his integrity, high competence, and knowledge in the world of Italian and European lacrosse.
We asked Steven what the Italian Federation’s objectives were for this year:
Our main objectives for this year are those of continued growth and development. We would like to see the teams continue to grow as they have been doing over the past couple of seasons both numerically and technically and we would like to have an ever increasing number of home grown players on the national team roster.
As far as development goes the Federation has to continue to help the teams through referee courses and clinics and we must concentrate also on the development of the female sector.
Over the last season we have seen the first female teams appear in Italy and we need to help new teams emerge.
We have a lot of work to do but are keen to get things done.
But what about the championship?
As first act in January, the new FIGL board released the championship schedule which will see matches commence in February. Seven teams are ready to start the 4th Italian championship and the 5th edition of the Italian cup in 2012/2013.
Here they are, in alphabetical order:
Bologna Sharks; Pellicani Bocconi Lacrosse (Pelicans Bocconi Lacrosse), the team of Bocconi University of Milan, reigning champions; Phoenix Perugia; Red Hawks Merate, winners of the 2011/12 Italian Cup and italian champions 2010/2011 ; Roma Leones (Roma Lions), the oldest team in Italy. Italian champions 2009/2010 and three times Italian cup winners; San Marino Titans, the brand new team in Italy (well… almost Italy) founded in 2012; Torino Lacrosse Taurus (Torino Lacrosse Bulls).
The Italian championship will be divided in two phases. During the first part of the competition (from February the 10th until April the 14th) two qualification groups (3 teams in the northern group and 4 in the southern one, in order to limit travel expenses) will be played and in the second part of the season (from april the 25th until may the 5th) the best two teams of each group will play semifinals and finals while the teams from 5th to 7th place will play a separate tournament, in the same period, to obtain their final standings.
So without further delay… let’s play!
For more, check out Coach Cibe’s Italian Lacrosse Blog. Just click the image below!
Giacomo “Coach Cibe” Bonizzoni
Photo Credit: Muriel Geroli