‘Australia’ beats ‘France’ in BVIFA Women’s Five-a-side World Cup


Australia defeated France on penalties at the BVIFA Women’s Five-a-side World Cup final on June 21. Photo: Charlle E. Jackson / VINO

Australia defeated France on penalties at the BVIFA Women’s Five-a-side World Cup final on June 21. Photo: Charlle E. Jackson / VINO

The British Virgin Islands Football Association’s (BVIFA) ‘Women’s Five-a-side World Cup’ concluded on Sunday June 21, 2015 at the Althea Scatliffe Primary School field with another action packed afternoon of exciting football in a cup final atmosphere.

The girls, split into four teams representing France, Australia, Germany and the USA, played in two groups with France and Australia topping their group to earn the right to clash in the day’s final.

The teams, handpicked by BVIFA Technical Director Katie Rowson based on what she had seen over the previous three weeks of competition, were all evenly matched and the games proved very competitive affairs.

“Out of six matches there were three draws,” commented Rowson. “It was pleasing to see how the selections gelled and the way in which the teams set up. The action was fast and furious with all the teams displaying good control and movement off the ball, but it was also encouraging to see the teams being disciplined in defense.”

Preliminary results
Australia and France tied 1-1, after Lilly Pierce’s early strike was cancelled out by Kaylah Skelton, who was subsequently named the tournament’s Most Improved Player.

Morgan Creque then scored the only goal of the game as Germany beat the USA, 1-0, followed by two draws between USA and Australia and France and Germany. In the last round of group play, Australia used goals by Yasmin Ruffell Smith and Brittany Peters to beat Germany 2-0 and Skelton popped up to net for France in the 1-0 victory over the USA.

Final goes down to the wire
France then met the ‘Aussies’ in the grand finale with the excitement building and culminating in a penalty shoot out, which saw some athletic goal-keeping and some well placed rocket shots by Pierce, Ruffell Smith, Sheniece St John and Peters as Australia came home victorious 4-1.

As in previous weeks, an MVP was awarded from each match with Zahriya Smith, Morgan Creque, Chandni Wattley, Kaylah Skelton and Brittany Peters all getting a CCT voucher for $25, presented in a CCT branded water bottle. Special recognition was also given to Alisha Ayres, Bella O’Reilly and Alice Looney. “These three newcomers really impressed me with their work rate, technical skills and, despite being the youngest, the way they got stuck in every week,” stated Rowson.

The top goal scorer each week received an “Always” basket sponsored by Road Town Wholesale. Skelton picked up the award this week to follow, Marie Lumley, Laresha Martin and St John.

To mark the end of the Tournament, team Australia were celebrated as winners with individual trophies as were France as runners up, sponsored by OBM and all the participants received BVIFA medals.

“ The programme attracted 37 players, 40 games were played, 81 goals were scored, with an MVP from each game celebrated with gifts from the various sponsors, including CCT, Yo Lounge, Hazem’s and Eclipse Hair Salon and Spa. Personally, it was fantastic to see so many girls enjoying the game and showing their competitiveness with such a positive and “fair play” attitude,” noted Rowson.

What’s next?
Next up for the Ladies is the build up for the nine-a-side tournament scheduled for September, which includes practice sessions on Sunday June 28 and July 5, 2015 from 2:00pm until 4:00pm.

“Now that I have seen most of the players performing competitively, I am very excited to work with them over the next two Sundays,” commented Rowson. “As well as training, we will take the opportunity to register players and teams for the upcoming 9 v 9 league, commencing Sunday 20th September. The plan is to work alongside the clubs and mentor the coaches to prepare for the league and further developing the women’s game.

“The league will provide an opportunity for the players show their tactical awareness, fitness and commitment over the 12-week competition and will allow me to select those players ready to represent the territory in the BVIFA’s planned 2016 international competitions.”