(Czech Lacrosse Union) The Czech National Junior (U19) women have been working together as a team for two years. While training, they have been organizing many events to help fund their dream of representing the Czech Republic at the 2015 FIL Rathbones Women’s U19 World Lacrosse Championship in Edinburgh, Scotland from July 23 to August 1, 2015. The team is comprised of a great group of amazing young girls. They train together, have fun together and are looking for success together in Scotland.
Czech’s 2015 U19 Women’s World Championship Squad
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Barbara Bažantová (Head Coach)
Anna Do?kalová (Assistant Coach)
Lenka Pešková (Manager)
Vít Bábik (Medical)
In 1993, Edinburgh hosted the World Cup for the Senior Women and it was first time a Czech National Team participated in such an event. At that time, this team’s players were not even born yet. “This year the Czechs are back at Edinburgh to show the world how much Czech lacrosse has improved over the last two decades,” said Adéla Procházková, the captain of Czech U19 Women’s National Team and the daughter of one of the players from the 1993 team.
Fourteen years later, in 2007, the Czech National Junior team competed at their first U19 Women’s World Championship in Peterborough, Canada and finished ninth out of 11 teams. Four years later, in 2011 in Hannover, Germany, the girls finished ninth out of 12 teams. At that time, it was believed that there would not be enough girls to form a team for the 2015 U19 Women’s World Championship. It was a sad time for girls lacrosse in the Czech Republic.
Over next two years, however, there was growth in Czech lacrosse community. Coaches Barbara Bažantová and Anna Do?kalová began to prepare a team of young players from three Prague clubs (SK Lacrosse Southern City, LCC Radotín and TJ Sokol Smíchov I).
The biggest challenge facing the team wasn’t on the field. It was finding enough finances for the trip to Scotland. This was made even more daunting with the realization that the National Senior Team would not be unable to participate in the 2013 World Cup in Oshawa, Canada due to a lack of funding. Despite the gloomy outlook, these young Czech Junior players were determined that they would not miss their chance to play in the Edinburgh tournament. So over the next few years they prepared many events to get enough finances to participate. The last necessary funding was received through crowdfunding on the web with Hithit.cz. At last they had enough funds to cover expenses for their journey to Scotland.
Czech U19 Women’s Hithit.com Crowdfunding Video
“We have been working with these girls for two years,” explained Assistant Coach Anna Do?kalová. “We can see big progress, not only in their lacrosse play, but also their mental progress. Now they understand in real-life terms, the meanings of ‘responsibility,’ ‘gratitude,’ and ‘hard work.’ From the beginning, off the field, these girls have faced and overcome their financial challenge and on the field, they have faced the challenges of playing practice matches against senior and mainly stronger teams. It’s been an excellent character building exercise as well as challenging preparation for the World Championship,” Do?kalová stated proudly.
After placing 9th twice, the Czech girls want to make it to the quarterfinals. They know it won’t be easy, but during last few months they were able to win a few games against some National Senior teams. “Reaching the quarterfinals would be a great success for us and it is our big wish,” said Head Coach Barbara Bažantová.
Procházková added, “The girls are holding together and supporting each other. Especially now, when we are confronted by injuries, we understand the importance of mutual support. We understand what it means to be part of a team. We have to be there for all of us and surmount difficulties together.”
It’s a team spirit, which could be one of the secret powers of the Czech team in Edinburgh.
Czech U19 Women Train Together, Play Together
Find out more about the Czech Lacrosse Union:
U19 Women’s Page: https://lacrosseteam.cz/
About the Czech Lacrosse Union
The Czech Lacrosse Union (CLU) is an umbrella organization for men’s lacrosse (Czech Men’s Lacrosse Association), women’s lacrosse (Czech Women’s Lacrosse) and intercrosse (Czech Intercrosse Association). CLU is the registered official governing body of lacrosse in the Czech Republic.
Czech Lacrosse Union
Prague 6, ZIP 160 00