be social

New league launches 2012 touch season

GUERNSEY Touch starts its 2012 season next week with a new league.

The FNB Super League will see more than 60 players divided into four teams to compete in an eight week competition.

‘The FNB Summer and Autumn Touch Leagues are run in a traditional format with teams entering as a whole. The FNB Super League will be different in that players have entered and then been divided into four teams of equal standard,’ said chair of Guernsey Touch Katrina Bray.

‘The aim of the league is to provide players with the opportunity of playing with players they wouldn’t normally, share skills and then hopefully take those skills back to their usual league teams and improve the standard of touch being played.’

The four teams called Eagles, Flames, Sabres and Sharks will each play each other twice before the semi-finals and finals.

‘The games will be played on an international size pitch and be 40 minutes long so it will be very different to the FNB Summer and Autumn Touch Leagues and because the teams are very similar in standard, we should see some very exciting and competitive games,’ said Katrina.

The games start on Wednesday 28th March at 6.30pm at North Football Club.

Once the FNB Super League finishes, there will be just a few weeks until the start of the FNB Summer Touch League, which will also see a new approach. Historically the mixed teams have been divided into three leagues at the start of the season and then halfway through are regrouped depending on their success.

‘Now that teams are more established, teams will be starting the league in the same division as they finished last year and will remain in that division for the whole season with the top teams being promoted and the bottom teams being relegated,’ said Katrina.

Touch has grown significantly in Guernsey in recent years and last year saw more than 400 players take part in the league and the Guernsey Mixed team return from the World Cup with the Mixed Bowl and ranked ninth in the world.

‘2011 was a very exciting year for touch in Guernsey and I’m sure 2012 will be just as exciting. As well as the leagues, we also have the CISX Channel Islands’ Championship which is already attracting interest from teams in the UK, the Inter-Insular in August and we’re working towards the European Championship in Italy in September,’ said Katrina.

‘We took four teams to the 2010 Euros and our aim is to do that again this year and try and improve on our ranking of sixth in Europe.’

Anyone interested in playing touch can find out more at www.guernseytouch.org.gg