New teams and format to kick off Christian league
2013: The Norfolk Christian Football League will kick off its new season on Saturday (September 14) with 46 teams from 18 different churches, including a doubling in the number of Under 10 teams and a change in format for the adult league competitions.
The adult league will have 14 teams divided into two completely separate divisions of seven each. New teams are from Lighthouse Church in Sheringham and St John’s, Norwich.
The two knockout competitions will have a new Champions League type group stage format after seeded first round matches, meaning that more teams will retain an interest for longer. Group winners will then go straight into the respective Wroxham Road Shield and Bishop’s Cup finals, pencilled in for May 10.
League secretary, Jess Tyson, said: “At the EGM on September 2, teams voted for the adult division to stay as two separate leagues and for the new cup formats – this is a new venture for the league and is designed to make it fairer as well as giving teams something to play for right till the final stages of the competition.”
The season will kick off with ten teams in the Under 10 league, up from just five last season including new teams from Stoke Holy Cross, Heartsease Youth, ENYP, Cringleford and Heigham Park Rangers. There is also a new King’s Under 14 team.
Jess said: “This was an area where we wanted to increase teams as it will in subsequent years help to boost numbers across the league as teams move up through the age groups. Tim Stapleford and Paul Smith are continuing their great work on the North Norfolk initiative.”
League chairman, Mike Culwick, said: “With the NCFL, the football is a mission and the league is willing to help any church set up their own football team for future season. Churches can invite a committee member to come and speak to the league leadership to explain more about the league and the mission work we do.”
Dates have also been fixed for the Youth Cup Finals – May 3, and the Youth 5-a-side Tournament – May 17.
The NCFL AGM was held on June 17, where the committee was voted into office. Mike Culwick and Jim Green were voted in again as Chair and Vice Chair along with Jess Tyson as Secretary and Simon Nobbs as Treasurer. Other committee positions are Welfare Officer (Carolyn Lewis), Referees Officer (Chris Allen) and Results Secretary (Phil Dove)
In preparation for the new season the NCFL committee had an ‘away day’ on Saturday July 20 at All Hallows Convent, Ditchingham. The day was facilitated by NYFC Director Nick Blanch and was a chance for the committee to assess where the league was and to set priorities for the future. There was also time for prayer and worship.
Visit the NCFL website www.norfolkcfl.co.uk
Pictured above are the Sheringham Under 10s team who won both the Fair Play Trophy and the Five-a-side tournament last season.