Sunshine Coast Pineapples will play off at the National Youth Championships at Sunshine Coast Stadium next week. Photo: Supplied
Sunshine Coast Pineapples will play off at the National Youth Championships at Sunshine Coast Stadium next week. Photo: Supplied

Keen youngsters descend on Coast for mass touch footy event

Sunshine Coast Stadium will next week host some of the best young touch footballers from across Queensland as they play off for a national championship.

From Thursday, October 1 to Saturday, October 3, the first mass touch football event in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic will feature 50 teams competing in the Touch Football Australia championship.

The COVID-safe event will include Under-12s, Under-14s and Under-16 divisions, as well as the regular Under-18s.

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Despite the challenges brought on by coronavirus, 50 teams still have their eyes on the prize, showing participants’ eagerness to get back to the sport.

Touch Football Australia CEO Jamie O’Connor said while the tournament was different this year, the organisation was committed to holding the event.

“The National Youth Championships offers an opportunity for our Queensland-based

junior players to participate and experience the many social and mental health benefits of playing sport in a year where they have been starved of that,” he said.

“The event delivers significant economic benefit which will play a role in assisting in the recovery of Sunshine Coast businesses and tourism operators, and with the Sunshine Coast Council having been a partner of ours for more than a decade, we’re really excited to be able to play our part in that recovery.

“It is also important, as the national sporting organisation, for us to display strong, positive leadership to instil confidence in our membership that people can get back to playing sport as long as government-approved safety measures are in place and adhered to.”

Brisbane City Cobras will play off at the National Youth Championships at Sunshine Coast Stadium next week. Photo: Supplied
Brisbane City Cobras will play off at the National Youth Championships at Sunshine Coast Stadium next week. Photo: Supplied

Economy Portfolio Councillor Terry Landsberg said Sunshine Coast Council had been a major sponsor of the National Youth Championships during its time as a long-term partner with Touch Football Australia.

“Our region hosts a wide range of sporting events, competitions and training opportunities which enable talented young athletes to grow, develop and compete in a safe, friendly environment,” Cr Landsberg said.

“I applaud Touch Football Australia’s proactive approach, and their commitment to make this year’s event happen.

“Council is keen to support COVID-safe events that attract visitors to the region, we have a fantastic destination, and we are open for business.”

Previous participants in the National Youth Championships event include NRL stars Kalyn Ponga, Ryan Papenhuyzen and, of course, NRLW stars such as Tarryn Aiken.

Games on field one of the three-day event, and all finals games, will be livestreamed via Touch Football Australia’s Facebook page.


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