Navy men’s and women’s futsal teams put out a strong showing at the Australian Defence Force Futsal (ADFF) National Carnival at the weekend with the men coming away with the Inter-Service Shield and second overall.
Defence Australian Public Service (APS) secured the top accolades for the Men’s division - a feat never been accomplished by this team until now. The Navy women took it to the Army, but this year, were unable to retain the champion status they won in 2013.
The carnival was played with competitive and a strong positive spirit, with every team capable of finishing at the top. The Men’s division was contested by: Navy; Air Force; Army and an APS team. With Air Force unable to provide a team, Army and Navy battled it out in two games for the Women’s Trophy.
Leading Seaman Sarah Hickling, one of the goal scorers for the Navy Women remarked that the highlight of the Carnival each year is not whether Navy wins on the day.
“Regardless of who wins the title, even when it is us, that is never the best part for me. Rather, it is the camaraderie on and off the court within my service and with the other two (services),” she said.
The Navy men secured wins in their games against Air Force and Army with scores of 8-1 and 7-3 respectively. In these two games almost every member of the entire team found the back of the net. In the APS game, Navy were forced to play catch up from the start as APS put a quick couple of goals through in the opening ten minutes. Navy regathered and clawed their way back to a one-goal deficit, which was later, again stretched wide open in a similar way in which the game had started. APS won seven goals to four.
Seaman Matthew Sini of the Navy Men’s team was impressed by the quality of futsal at the carnival.
“It is a fantastic experience to play in the ADFF Futsal Carnival. The quality of futsal this year was a great challenge for everyone. Defence APS in particular have come from being dark horses to the one to beat in 2015,” he said.
The carnival was held at Sydney University and has now been running for several years.