(WILMINGTON, DE) During the recent FIL Men’s World Lacrosse Championships held in Denver, CO and hosted by the US Lacrosse, Inc., there were many positive occurrences for the sport of Lacrosse to show the world “IT’S COMING BACK!”
As Lacrosse was a sport played in the Olympics in 1904 and 1908, the current leadership of the Federation of International Lacrosse is actively preparing to apply for the return of the game in the modern day Olympic games. Several very important milestones can be identified from the FIL General Assembly through the completion of the games.
Highlighting the Opening Ceremonies was the attendance of special invited guests of the FIL Board and the Development Committee who were entertained in the FIL suite. Vlad Marinesc, Director General of SportAccord and his wife flew from Switzerland to view their first game of lacrosse ever and were very impressed with the Opening Ceremonies and the game that followed, USA vs Canada. Mr. Marinesc commented that the game of lacrosse needed to be in the Olympics.
Also joining FIL, as special invited guests, were the General Manager of the International World Games Association, Mrs. Patsy Dew and her husband. Lacrosse has been invited to compete in the World Games 2017 in August in Wroclaw, Poland.
The former President of the International Lacrosse Federation and FIL Honorary Member, Peter Hobbs was also in attendance.
During the following night’s double-header, the FIL invited several members of the World Anti-Doping Agency and fellow members of the US Anti-Doping Agency to discuss the success of the FIL Anti-Doping program and the future of FIL’s Drug Free efforts.
Highlighting the World Championships were nine new member nations who were competing for the first time in an FIL event. The top finisher of the new nations was Israel who climbed to 7th position. Other new nations and their final rankings – Turkey 22nd, Belgium 27th, Thailand 29th, Russia 32nd, China 33rd, Uganda 34th, Colombia 37th and Costa Rica 38th. This marks the largest increase in new nations competing in the history of Men’s World Championships.
During the General Assembly, which occurred before the games began, Malaysia was accepted as the 51st member of the Federation of International Lacrosse. This is significant because, as the FIL Board applies for recognition to the International Olympic Committee, FIL must have 50 IOC recognized member nations in place. Currently the Iroquois Federation is not an IOC recognized nation. Malaysia will compete in the Asian Pacific Lacrosse Union’s next event (which now totals 10 FIL member nations) and has plans to attend the 2018 FIL Men’s World Championships in Manchester, England.